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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone have experience about whether it is possible to remove the ignition key (or turn it to "off" or "lock") when the vehicle is in motion?

Maybe a dumb question, but considering where SAAB has placed the ignition key, I still feel quite curious about what happens when for example an annoying and drunk person in the front seat reaches over and tries to remove the key when the car is in motion.

I'm not too keen on testing this myself (at least not on my own car).

Thanks,
Alex
 

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ignition key

Dont know whether this is related but i have a 900 classic with the key postioned below as standard and it is impossible to remove key when the engine is running it appears to e captured while the engine is running, but if someone was to reach from the backseats :nono; they would physically have to turn the key to the off position to release it
900nut
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply!

My actual fear is not really that someone will take the key, but more that they will manage to turn the car off while I'm driving it. Considering the automatic gearbox, it could probably do some unpleasant harm to the vehicle. I figured that there might be some kind of protection against this; for example that it would be impossible to turn the key from "on" to "off" when the gearbox is in "R", "D" or any manual gears. I've asked a SAAB dealer but ended up without any answer...
 

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Correct me if I am wrong, with an Automatic gearbox (1) They would be unable to turn the key to full off while in D, and (2) If the vehicle is in motion whil ein D, a sensor puts the ignition into Neutral, and prevents the car from being rerstarted until you put the gearbox to N. I could be wrong, but I am pretty sure that shoudl someone be foolish enough to try to grenade your tranny you should still be okay.
 

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It is possible. When I was doing the 24 hour test drive in an 03 Linear prior to my purchase, my buddy asked me if the key was removable. I said "no, its locked in magnetically or something, it won't come out." So, naturally he tried pulling on it and out it came. The car kept running, as we were doing about 60mph on the highway at the time.

For what its worth, my friend is a big strong guy, and he pulled hard. The key is removable.
 

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There is a locking mechanism in the ignition that prevents that....in or out. It is actually a set of mechanical teeth that grab the grooves on the key, pulling on it hard enough to remove it would damage the teeth in the cyclinder. How did he get it back in, or out for that matter, without permanently damaging the cylinder? I hope you bought a different vehicle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
ArcGP said:
So, naturally he tried pulling on it and out it came. The car kept running, as we were doing about 60mph on the highway at the time.
Did he also kill the engine by doing that? Was it an automatic or manual? Did the steering wheel lock engage?
 

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tnkr111 said:
There is a locking mechanism in the ignition that prevents that....in or out. It is actually a set of mechanical teeth that grab the grooves on the key, pulling on it hard enough to remove it would damage the teeth in the cyclinder. How did he get it back in, or out for that matter, without permanently damaging the cylinder? I hope you bought a different vehicle.

Believe me, it can be pulled out and pushed back in!

The 'locking teeth' are only plastic, and with the angle of the indents on the key, they don't need to give too much to release the key. Didn't ccause any damage to mine.

You can also start the car without the key in the ignition. Some guys reported immobiliser failure messages after this, though I had no problem.

Anyway, that shouldn't be an issue, as you still have to give it a real firm tug to get it out.

As for turning the ignition off whilst the car is in motion, this obviously isn't a good idea!!!! You lose PAS and Braking servo assist.

What happens in an auto I don't know, but i'm sure there is a legal requirement that the engine shuts down when the key is removed if the key is the start/stop engine control as this would form the emergency isolation in the event of an engine fire.
 

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I never gave mine a hard enough tug :eek: , so that is good to know Mr. Davies. All else makes good sense.
 

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You should always tug yours as hard as you can!!!! :cool: So long as it doesn't hurt..........

Gareth
 

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tnkr111 said:
Correct me if I am wrong, with an Automatic gearbox (1) They would be unable to turn the key to full off while in D, and (2) If the vehicle is in motion whil ein D, a sensor puts the ignition into Neutral, and prevents the car from being rerstarted until you put the gearbox to N. I could be wrong, but I am pretty sure that shoudl someone be foolish enough to try to grenade your tranny you should still be okay.
You can turn the key and eng8ine fully off whilst in "D" - but you can't pull the key out - you can move the stick to "park" whilst off, then the key is released. So the car is still switched on even when the key is set off. I think damage is quite unlikely with the auto. It seems quite well covered.
 

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We were driving in a manual transmission 9-3. The key was pulled straight out and re-inserted, all while driving. The ignition was never turned off, nor did the car die.


By the way, if you guys haven't already seen the posts, it is possible to start your car with a finger or thumb, provided you are holding the key in the same hand very close to the ignition hole. Seriously. It really impressed my wife for about 27 seconds.
 

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I'm old enough to remember...

When locking steering wheels first appeared.

I was 18, just graduated from High School, living at home to make money for college. I had been driving my sister's Volvo 124 -- VW bug on steroids --while she was away at college. She took her car back, so I bought a Chevy Vega for $1500 -- lots of stories there.

So, I'm on my way home late one night and I do the usual; I turn off the car and the lights, put it in neutral and coast down the street to turn into the driveway so I don't wake up my parents. Only this time I'm in the Vega instead of the Volvo, reasoning impaired as usual.

The steering wheel locks. I'm heading for the end of the street that drops into the lake. And my reactions are not crisp.

Fortunately, I survived by putting the key back into the lock. COuld have been a hell of a lawsuit these days.

JM
 

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I started mine (04 auto) with my thumb and index finger while keeping the key close to the slot...the engine shut off after i removed the key from the general area of the slot and the immobilizer message came up on the SID...i turned the slot back to off with my fingers and reinserted the key it took about 1 or 2 seconds longer than normal to unlock the steering wheel lock and maybe 3 seconds longer than normal to get the engine to crank over after turning it to start... it was fine after that.
 
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