General Motors’ ignition switch recall prompted many analysts to believe the automaker would move exclusively to push-button start. But, that hasn’t been the case.
Automotive News reported on Sunday that the number of GM vehicles not offered with push-button start sits at 19 percent in the United States. Across the automotive industry, push-button start isn’t optional or standard on 18 percent of new vehicles. It’s an improvement from the 24 percent of vehicles not offered with the feature, but there are reasons behind the automaker’s move to not go all-in on push-button start.
Foremost, the feature adds cost to any vehicle, and for small cars it’s a lose-lose scenario in a market yearning for crossovers, trucks and SUVs.
“There are some customers, notably fleets, who still want keyed ignitions, so those will continue to be available on some models and trims,” GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson told AN.
Push-button start may eliminate problems similar to GM’s faulty ignition switches, which were linked to 124 deaths, but they also bring their own problems. Some vehicles fail to shut off if left unattended, which has led to a spike in carbon monoxide deaths.