If you buy one of these cars you can unlock it with your iPhone

The reality is that this function is not very well known, mainly because there are not many car models that have adopted and incorporated the functionality. However, it seems that little by little some brands are beginning to integrate this solution into their new models. Below we show you which brands and models already have it available.

Your car key on your iPhone or Apple Watch

Apple's Digital Car Key is a feature that allows users to virtually add their car key to the app. Briefcase, enabling vehicle control directly from an Apple device. Specifically, from the iPhone or Apple Watch. This system not only allows you to lock and unlock the car, but also start it, thus offering an excellent, highly integrated user experience. Implementation of this feature varies by car manufacturer, but generally includes several modes of use:

  • Passive input: By simply approaching the vehicle with the device in your pocket, it will automatically unlock, also allowing the car to start once inside. When you drive away, the vehicle will lock again.
  • Proximity: By interacting with the vehicle by holding the device near certain points such as the door handle or a specific reader, actions such as locking, unlocking and starting the car can be performed.
  • Remote control: Beyond physical proximity, this feature allows users to perform actions remotely, such as locking and unlocking the vehicle, among other possible functionalities.

In addition, the digital key function includes the «Mode Express» that eliminates the need for additional authentication via Face ID, Touch ID or passcode, further streamlining vehicle access and use. Apple has also integrated the possibility of sharing the digital key through Messages, Mail and AirDrop, expanding the possibilities of shared use and secure access management.

What cars are compatible with the Apple Digital Key?

The list of vehicles that support this Apple technology has been growing little by little, although at a pace that some consider slow. bmw was one of the first to adopt this technology, offering it in a wide range of its models from 2021 to 2023, including the 1 to 8 series, several X and M series models, as well as the new i4, iX, iX1, iX3 , i3, i7 and the BMW i5. Other brands that have also been adopting this technology are the following:

  • BYD
  • Genesis
  • hyundai
  • kia
  • Lotus
  • Mercedes Benz

These have also begun to integrate this functionality in some of their most recent models. If you are thinking of buying a car from one of these brands, ask if the model you are interested in includes this feature or not.

apple car

Slow adoption and what the future of the digital car key will be like

Despite the clear advantage in convenience and security that the digital car key offers, its adoption has not been as rapid as initially expected. This raises questions about possible obstacles holding back its implementation. Some of the most important aspects are the price of deployment per vehicle, licensing fees, costs to obtain the necessary hardware and other operational factors. All this could be contributing to the late implementation of the function in most brands.

The integration of the digital car key into the daily lives of drivers also raises questions about the security of data, dependence on technology and the need to maintain physical alternatives for emergency situations. Although Apple is clear about it, this way of controlling the starting, stopping and turning on of your car is totally safe and reliable.