How much does a car key cost?

Easy question – very difficult answer, because there are so many types of car key for so many makes and models, but I will show you later the average cost from a car dealer and the indicative price from a mobile locksmith.

First thing is to understand what goes into making a new car key when all your car keys are lost.

You are asking a skilled locksmith to travel to you, with tens of thousands of pounds of equipment. Once there you are asking him to unlock your car without any damage, even though your car has high security locks. Even if the car is unlocked, he still needs to pick the lock in order to know what shape the new key needs to be cut.

Next, he is supplying and cutting a key that contains advanced electronic components. A very miniature computer essentially.

Now he will connect his computer to the car computer and attempt to communicate. To do this he needs to find out the cars security codes – its password. Hacking if you like.

Finally he will reprogram your car to accept the new car key. Easy isn’t it?

He will have very expensive multi vehicle equipment to do this or dealer level equipment and the dealer will charge him every time he uses it.

Doesn’t seem so expensive now, does it?

Anyway, here’s a list of common car models and the average dealer cost of a new car key, and the indicative price of phoning your local car locksmith and letting him do it.

Remember though, dealers quote a minimum of 1 week to do the job and some take up to 4 weeks, so you will be without your car. Also, they will expect you to get the car to them as they are not mobile, so remember to add recovery charges of £150+ to the bill.

MakeModelDealer CostLocksmith Cost
BMW3 Series£274£180
Volkswagon VWGolf£330£170

Remember to add the recovery costs. If these were £150 then a Vauxhall Corsa would end up costing as much as £467 and you would be without the car for at least a week. Or you could call lostcarkeys247.com and be on your way, same day, for around 35% of that!!

Average costs in 2022 as researched by nimblefins.

Unlocking the car to get your keys out? Large Breakdown networks charge around £120 (even if they don’t do it). Most independent locksmiths charge £80 – £100 and will get in to your car; we are specialists!!!

For specific information on the cost to replace your car key, call us, we can give you precise information.


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