Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The $450 Toyota Key

This is a picture of a Toyota key for Kate's car, a 2007 Toyota Hybrid Camry. This is the only key we have because I borrowed her extra and have somehow misplaced it. But what do you do with a key that you have misplaced? Get a new one, have one cut from the original or go to the dealership if its a special key like the one that Toyota makes.

Well, after looking around a bit in the house and exhausting that search, I decided to pursue replacing it, so I went to the dealership where they informed me that a replacement would cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $400-$450. For a key. To a car. Not the car itself. just. the. key.

I am standing there and am beside myself, shocked that somehow a simple object has become an instrument to separate you from your money. They really have you over a barrel, you can't just sell your car if you disagree with how much a replacement part costs. You are committed when you buy a car and that includes all those "little" things, like the key.

The guy at in Parts says, " well, its specially cut with a laser, we have to send it out to get cut, we don't even have the equipment to do it." Like I am supposed to feel better about that. Oh, yeah, even YOU GUYS don't even have the equipment to cut a key that you sell, well, then, I guess money is no object!

The key is programmed so that you can get in the car, while the key is in your pocket, and it will start the car when you press the button. That IS pretty cool, but is it $450 cool? Naaaaw.

For that price, we should have received three keys, one for each member of the family, with our names engraved and it should have been decorated with Swarovski Chrystals.

I checked online and found a replacement for only $230, but I did have to have it programmed by the dealership. I may go that route, it certainly would save me a couple hundred if I decided to replace that key. I know I will taking a second and third look at every nook and cranny in the house looking for that damn key.

I also know that when it comes time to get a new car, Toyota can suck it. Take your special key made from unicorn horns (or whatever magical element that makes it so darn expensive) and shove it!

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