New Car Key Regulates Driving Habits

Dennis Faas's picture

While none of us look forward to growing another year older, there are some birthdays that are better than others. Among the most prolific is our "sweet sixteen" where for many of us, the dream of being able to operate a vehicle on our own terms becomes a reality.

The first few years are all the same: the constant begging to use the family car on any given weekend is matched with stressed warnings by our parents to reduce our driving speed, turn down the radio and buckle up for safety.

While we always practice "safe driving" when our parents are riding with us, the rules all change when we drive alone or with friends.

Not any more!

The Ford Motor Co. has implemented a tiny chip in select key sets that allow parents to regulate the speed limit, cap the stereo volume and demand the use of seat belts at all times. When operating the vehicle with a "MyKey", the driver is forced to drive safe...the car will not allow any reckless actions. (Source:

Think of it as the "V-Chip" for automobiles. Instead of deciding what their child is allowed to watch, parents now regulate how their child drives a car. If you haven't guessed it by now, the chip is located inside the key so the vehicle "knows" who is operating the car at all times.

The MyKey also prevents drivers from disabling other safety features like the traction control, so spinning tires to make "doughnuts" are a thing of the past.

While a number of individuals praise the system for attempting to make the roads safer for all drivers, there are just as many people who believe that the system will lead to more arguments amongst parents and children. These people claim that children will be less likely to tell their parents the names of their friends and their desired destination out of the distrust this system creates.

What do the teens think about the MyKey?

According to a recent Ford survey, 67% of teenagers oppose the new system (as expected). The number falls to 36% when the teens are told that their vehicle privileges will likely increase as a result of using the MyKey. (Source:

The feature will come standard on the 2010 Ford Focus, while eventually making their way to all Ford, Lincoln and Mercury car models.

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