Suppose a car that is started is parked and locked, with the keys inside the car with the driver. Should someone be able to unlock the car by using the outside buttons on the door? When I try to do so in my 2008 Altima, the system unlocks the door just like it would if the keys were outside. Isn't this a little dangerous from a security point of view as essentially your car is never locked when you are in it.

  • Did you try it both in park and in gear?
    – vini_i
    Jan 1, 2017 at 18:18
  • @vini_i Yeah, makes no difference.
    – Riikk
    Jan 2, 2017 at 10:15
  • The feature may be programmable, try checking your owners manual or contacting the dealer.
    – vini_i
    Jan 2, 2017 at 12:47
  • It doesn't say anything about it. Yeah I might contact Nissan. See: goo.gl/K9iHCf
    – Riikk
    Jan 3, 2017 at 12:44

1 Answer 1


Not all cars do this. I have personal experience with a 2011 Dodge Journey which uses keyless entry. When I pull the handle with the keys on me, the door automatically unlocks and it opens. However, if I try to open the locked door with the keys inside of the car... it won't open.

I'm not sure how that works, if the sensor is short range and only directed to the exterior or what, but it seems pretty secure as far as that goes given the fact that I can manage to lock myself out.

Different cars are built differently, some are more secure than others in terms of this. But ignoring security for a second here, at least you're unlikely to get locked out of your car depending on where the keys were sitting in the car.

  • If you see the diagram from my instruction manual ( goo.gl/K9iHCf ), it would seem that is how my car should operate as well. I wrote an email to Nissan asking them if this is normal.
    – Riikk
    Jan 3, 2017 at 20:35
  • You are right, so the car is not designed to work the way you say it's been working for you. Therefore, I recommend getting that checked out. Is it constant and repeatable? Have you tried putting the keys in the center console? Passenger seat then open from the driver's side? It is a security flaw as it stands but try and narrow it down so that the dealership can better figure out the plan of attack.
    – revofire
    Jan 3, 2017 at 21:10

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