Does the cut make the key? In some ways, yes. In this article we will list what a laser cut car key is, and what benefits they have over traditionally cut keys.
Laser cut keys are, surprisingly, not cut by a laser. Their name is only one of several names they go by, including sidewinder key and internal cut key. Their unique appearance makes them easily identifiable over their traditionally cut counterparts. These keys have a smooth indention of a constant depth down the middle of the key shaft, as opposed to having grooves cut out of the side. Laser cut keys typically have the indention in both sides, so the key can be inserted into the ignition either way and still function. Because of the dual indention, the metal of the key's shaft is thicker than that of traditional keys. Typically, you will only see laser cut keys for car models manufactured in the 1990's and onward, but not always. Additionally, they are also common among higher end vehicles.
Because these keys are cut through the center as opposed to mechanically cut along the edge like traditional keys, you will often have to go directly to a dealership or a locksmith for a replacement. Not all locksmiths have the equipment needed to duplicate a laser cut key, but those that do will often charge a lower sum than a dealership would.
Laser cut keys boast higher precision over traditional keys. Additionally, they have a higher tolerance. These two characteristics combined make it harder for a would-be thief to pick a lock designed for these center cut keys. Plus, because the tools and machinery required to make these keys are not as common, it's less likely that a thief could get their hands on an unauthorized copy of a laser cut key.
So in this instance, the cut does make a difference. An added security perk to laser cut keys is a transponder chip system, similar to that used in VATS. You can read more about that system at our website. You can also check out the variety of locksmithing services we offer.