One of the longstanding features of a Ford has always been its SecuriCode keypad, an optional extra that added a numeric keypad to the B-pillar allowing entry without a key. The feature never quite proliferated onto other makes and models of cars and we weren’t really sure why. But now, GM has done its own version of the keypad as an optional extra, the first we’ve seen on a non-Ford. Apparently, it’s been around since 2015.
Ford has held a patent on the SecuriCode tech since 1999, which is possibly why it hasn’t seen more adoption. It’s unclear if GM had to license the technology or if its own design is different enough to be considered a different idea. Ford’s tech generally uses five touch-sensitive buttons with two numbers on each, but has some applications with physical buttons. The GM version, simply called Keyless Entry Keypad, uses five physical buttons with two numbers on each button, much in the same fashion as SecuriCode.
SecuriCode comes installed from the factory on certain Ford cars. GM only offers the KEK as a dealer-installed option, which is slightly strange for such a security-conscious part. It also seems like it would be a hassle to install, but the primary difference between the Ford and GM systems is that the GM version is wireless whereas the Ford version is hardwired.
I wonder what sort of security risk this poses because it’s wireless. Car thieves are known to sniff certain radio frequencies and replicate them to gain entry and start a car, with our own Rob Stumpf doing just that to his Honda Accord. The GM keypad should only unlock the car and not be able to start the engine.
Either way, it seems to be available for a reasonable number of GM vehicles and it is retrofittable by dealerships. At $185, it’s a bit of money to spend for an extra way into your car.
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