12 Cheap Cars with Keyless Ignition (Under $20k)

Keyless ignition is a feature that is gaining popularity and becoming a big selling point. It normally incorporates keyless entry also.

The system either starts the car remotely or uses a push button to start the car.

Remote starting and stopping come with other features that turn on climate control.

Below we look at cars that have both features and are affordable.

1. Nissan Versa

The Nissan Versa, one of the most affordable compact sedans on the market, features Nissan’s Intelligent Key, which incorporates keyless ignition.

It comes standard on the SV, Note SV, and SR trims. 

The Versa is typical of other Nissan compacts in terms of roominess. The external size is deceptive. It is only when you get into the cabin that you realize how spacious the compact is. 

The Nissan Versa gets its power from a 1.6-liter engine that produces 122 horsepower.

This is not a car to derive driving pleasure from, but to drive around in slow-moving traffic. It certainly is cheap to buy and run, with a fuel efficiency of up to 32 mpg in city driving. Transmission options include a 5-speed manual and the Nissan Xtronic Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT). 

The Nissan Versa has several trims. The entry-level Versa S is powered by the 1.-liter engine, mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. The SV trim features power windows, whilst the top-level SR adds a proximity keyless entry and push-button ignition.

Also read: Is it Worth Buying a Nissan with over 100K Miles?

2. 2016 Chevrolet Cruze

The Chevrolet Cruze is a front-wheel-drive compact sedan built by General Motors.

All Cruze trims are powered by a 1.4-liter turbocharged engine with an output of 153 horsepower.

Transmission is a 6-speed manual or 6-speed automatic with stop-start technology.

The L Manual is the base trim, with ten airbags and a 6-speaker audio system. It is either manual or automatic. They both have SiriusXM satellite radio.

The LT Manual or Automatic comes with a 6-speaker audio system, Daytime Running Lights, and cruise control, in addition to the LS Manual features.

The highest trim is the Limited LTZ Automatic. It comes with keyless ignition with proximity sensing.

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Proximity sensing is achieved through a Remote Link smartphone application used to lock and unlock the vehicle.

Other options on the top trims are a Bose audio system, navigation, an 8-inch touch screen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, and many other high technology features.

For safety, a backup camera is standard.

Optional features include lane departure, forward collision, and blind-spot warning.

The 2016 Chevrolet Cruze can be purchased for less than $20000 in the used-car market, depending on condition.

3. 2011 Cadillac CTS

The Cadillac CTS is a mid-size luxury sedan that comes with either a 3.0-liter or 3.6-liter V6 engine. Output is 270 and 306 horsepower respectively.

Five trims are available.

The base trim is powered by the 3.0-liter engine and mated to a standard 6-speed manual or an optional 6-speed automatic. Drive-train is rear-wheel or all-wheel.

All trims feature remote keyless entry, cruise control, dual-zone climate control, an 8-speaker audio system, and 17-inch wheels.

The top two trims can also add keyless ignition and remote engine start through the Luxury Level Two package.

A panoramic sunroof is optional on all trims.

The higher CTS 3.0 Performance adds a 10-speaker audio system, FE2 sport-tuned suspension, adaptive headlights, and wheels are upgraded to 18-inch.

Standard safety features on the CTS include the basic front-seat airbags, side curtain bags, anti-lock brakes, and stability and traction control.

On the road, the Cadillac CTS offers a lot of power, whether you are driving the base 3.0 or the 3.6 Premium.

Prices for the 2011 Cadillac range from $12000 to $30000 in the used-car market.

4. 2017 Hyundai Sonata

The Hyundai Sonata is a mid-size sedan that wrestles for attention and market share with the other established sedans like the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord.

The Hyundai Digital Key smartphone application affords remote starting of the vehicle, especially for those that need to enter a comfortable cabinet, especially in freezing winters.

The 2020 Sonata is equipped with either a 1.6-liter or a 2.5-liter turbocharged gasoline engine, with an output of 180 and 290 horsepower respectively.

The Hyundai Sonata is available in SE, SEL+, Eco, Limited, and Sport+ trims.

The entry-level SE is fitted with 16-inch alloys, air conditioning, a 7.0-inch touch screen infotainment with Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. 

Keyless ignition is a feature starting from the SEL+ trim.

The SE, SEL+, Sport+, and Limited models are equipped with a 2.4-liter gasoline engine with an output of 185 horsepower as standard.

A 2.0-liter turbo is optional on the Sport and Limited models, with an output of 245 horsepower. Transmission is a 6-speed automatic.

Also read: Does Hyundai Hold its Value? (Depreciation Charts)

5. 2016 Chevrolet Volt

The Volt is a plug-in electric five-door lift-back from GM. It is a four-seater with space for an additional fifth seat or bench.

It has an all-electric range of 53 miles. Traction power is provided by a single primary motor.

A secondary motor acts as a generator to charge the batteries, but it can also become a drive motor when required.

The range is extended by a 1.5-liter gasoline engine with an output of 101 horsepower. The electric drive produces 149 horsepower.

For city driving, the Volt operates mainly on electric power.

Standard features of the Chevrolet Volt include keyless ignition on all trims.

The LT trim is the base. It features automatic climate control, and a built-in Wi-Fi spot.

The Volt comes with a lot of options, starting with a 6-speaker audio system, heated front seats, navigation, Bose audio, LED headlamps, an 8-inch touch-screen, and 17-inch wheels.

The Premium trim adds blind-spot monitoring, lane-keep assist, and forward-collison as part of optional packages.

Safety features on all trims include standard ten airbags and a rearview camera.

The rest are optional, such as blind-spot monitors, lane-keeping assist, automatic braking, lane-departure, and forward-collision warning.

The volt drives quietly and smoothly, even when running on the gasoline engine.

The price for the 2016 Chevrolet Volt starts from $13000 in the used car market.

6. 2016 Nissan Altima

The Sporty and family-oriented Nissan Altima SR comes with several features. 

Engine choices are confined to the 2.5-liter 182 horsepower with a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT), and for the top models, a 3.5-liter V6 with an output of 270 horsepower, also mated to a CVT.

For stability and handling enhancement, the Altima SR is fitted with independent suspension, allowing the vehicle to negotiate tight corners easily at speed.

Features include Bluetooth, a 5.0-inch audio display, automatic headlights, LED taillights, a rearview camera, a sunroof, and dual-zone climate control.

A key feature is a keyless ignition with remote start. This is offered standard on the Altima SR.

Some of the safety features include adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, and automatic emergency braking.

Also read: Is it Worth Buying a Nissan with over 100K Miles?

7. 2015 Buick Regal

The 2015 Buick Regal is a mid-size front-wheel-drive luxury sedan that is presented in three models, including the eAssist mild hybrid.

The standard Regal and the Regal GS both use the 259-horsepower 2.0-liter turbo engine.

Transmission is a standard 6-speed automatic or a 6-speed manual for the front-wheel-drive Regal GS.

The Regal body is carried on 17-inch wheels.

Standard features from the base include leather upholstery, dual-zone climate control, an 8-inch touch screen, a 7-speaker audio system, and a backup camera.

Key safety features include ABS brakes, stability, and traction control.

Options are available from the factory. The major one is all-wheel drive. Other packages come with various features.

The Premium Package’s most notable feature is keyless ignition and entry, including remote starting.

Adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and lane departure are also options.

19-inch wheels are also available for the Regal GS, to enhance its sporty look.

The exterior features LED-enhanced headlights, but the rear-sloping roof compromises on rear headroom.

The Buick Regal is priced from $14000 in the used-car market.

8. 2017 Toyota Camry

The Toyota Camry is one of the world’s best-selling cars.

The most common engine is a 2.5-liter gasoline with an output of 178 horsepower. Transmission is a 6-speed automatic. An optional 3.5-liter V6 268 horsepower engine is also available for the more luxurious trims.

The LE and SE are the modest trims, whilst the XLE and XSE are the more luxurious and performance trims.

The SE features 16-inch steel wheels, power heated mirrors, cruise control, keyless entry, and a rearview camera.

Keyless ignition is added to the XLE and XSE models. This is accompanied by other features like leather seats and 17-inch Super Chrome Alloys.

A 6.1-inch touch screen is available on most models, whilst the trims with the luxury V6 engine get a bigger 7-inch screen.

Safety includes standard 10 airbags, electronic stability control, anti-lock brakes, and electronic brake-force distribution. Among the safety, options are adaptive cruise control and lane departure alert.

9. 2018 Jeep Renegade

The Jeep Renegade is the smallest SUV in the Jeep family. It is a five-seater sub-compact powered by either a 1.4-liter turbocharged gasoline engine that churns out 160 horsepower. It is connected to the wheels through a 6-speed manual transmission.

The other power plant is a 2.4-liter 180 horsepower gasoline engine, mated with a 9-speed automatic transmission. 

The Renegade comes with a front-wheel drive on the entry-level trim. However, the Selec-Terrain function enables the vehicle to switch between front and all-wheel drive depending on driving conditions or the selected driving mode.

Whilst externally small, the Renegade has a spacious interior.

The major features on all trims include a rearview camera, forward collision warning, and automatic emergency braking.

The latitude trim includes a 7.0-inch touch screen that incorporates AppleCarPlay and Android Auto and 16-inch alloy wheels. 

The Limited and Trailhawk incorporate keyless ignition, which allows the driver to start the vehicle without keys. The Trailhawk also comes with an all-wheel drive. 

Other options include a dual-pane sunroof, cruise control, and leather interior.

Also read: Does Jeep Hold its Value: 6 Models Compared

10. 2014 Acura ILX

The 2014 Acura ILX gives luxury at a great value to the consumer.

Three main trims are available for the entry-level sedan.

The first is the ILX Hybrid, with 1.5-liter gasoline integrated with the hybrid drive. Transmission is a Continuously Variable (CVT).

Standard features include keyless entry and keyless ignition, via a push-button start.

Other features are a moon roof, rearview camera, dual-zone automatic climate, and cloth-trimmed seats.

The next level up is the ILX 2.0-liter, with the power plant rated at 150 horsepower, and mated with a 5-speed automatic transmission.

It also features steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters for better power and transmission control.

At the top is the 2.4-liter powered model, mated with a 6-speed manual transmission.

All trims have leather upholstery, heated front seats, and a rearview camera.

Safety features include stability and traction control, ABS, EBD, and airbags.

The 2014 Acura ILX sells from $13000 to $20000 in the pre-owned market.

11. 2017 Dodge Journey

The 2017 Dodge Journey three-row SUV comes in four trims.

All trims feature keyless ignition and entry as standard. In addition, the top GT trim also includes remote start.

The entry-level is the Journey SE, powered by a 2.4-liter gasoline engine that produces 173 horsepower. It is mated with s 4-speed automatic transmission.

Other standard features include dual-zone climate control, a 6-speaker sound system, a 4.3-inch touch screen, and 17-inch wheels.

Other features are offered as an option.

These include the Connectivity Package, Popular Equipment, and the Comfort/Convenience package, which add Bluetooth, three-zone climate control, and a power-adjustable driver seat, respectively, among others.

The SXT trim is powered by the same 2.4-liter engine, with an option of a 3.6-liter V6 engine, and all-wheel-drive.

The Crossroad trim adds 19-inch alloys, whilst other features are provided under various options, including a navigation system, leather interior, and a sunroof.

The GT trim offers the option of the 3.6-liter engine with front-wheel drive and a 6-speed automatic transmission. Among the key features in various options are remote start, heated steering and front seats, and a security alarm.

The 2017 Dodge Journey sells from $14500 to $22000 in the used-car market.

12. 2017 Fiat 124 Spider

The Fiat 124 Spider is a rear-wheel-drive convertible based on the Mazda MX-5 Miata, but gives better value with its Italian heritage and style. The soft top is manually-operated.

The Fiat 124 is powered by a 1.4-liter turbocharged engine with an output of 160 horsepower. All trims come with a standard 6-speed manual or an optional 6-speed automatic.

Standard on the Fiat 124 Classica is keyless ignition featuring a push-button.

An optional Technology Collection Package adds a rearview camera, keyless entry, and a 7-inch infotainment screen.

Other standard features are 16-inch wheels, cloth seats, and Bluetooth.

The Lusso model comes with 17-inch wheels, heated leather-trimmed seats, automatic climate control, and keyless entry. Options include navigation, adaptive headlights, blindspot monitoring, and a 9-speaker Bose audio system.

The Abarth trim adds more power and a sport suspension, with optional Brembo brakes.

Also read: Are European Cars More Expensive to Maintain? (Comparison)

What are the Pros and Cons of a Car with Keyless Ignition?

Pros of Cars with Keyless Ignition

  1. Security

The system uses a unique code to unlock and start the car. This offers better security.

  1. Convenience

You don’t have to worry about losing or misplacing your keys.  

Keyless ignition or a push-button start offer convenience

Cons of cars with keyless ignition

  1. Security

Whilst the unique code protects you, hackers continue to find ways to steal the cars.

  1. Cost

The system comes at a cost. The system may malfunction, or you may lose the code.