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post #4 of (permalink) Old 28th October 2006
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I still think this situation is being largely mis-interpreted.

Renault used to issue keycards that could be 'one shot' coded to any car. They now only issue keycards that are pre-programmed to be 'one shot' coded to a specific vehicle, and then only after seeing proof of ownership. But as I see it, this is the state of play with brand new cards being issued by Renault HQ. Existing dealer stock and cards floating around on eBay should still be codeable to any vehicle, and this will no doubt continue to be the case until those reserves are exhausted.

To my mind, this means that it should still be okay to buy a card off eBay subject to the following checks:
1) The card has not yet been coded to another vehicle (but then this was always the case.)
2) The card is from the old stock, where the vehicle's ID was not pre-coded onto the card before leaving the factory (and why would anyone be selling cards that had been coded to a car? In theory, they shouldn't be able to get hold of them without proof of vehicle ownership.)
3) You can get someone to actually do the coding for you. As I've advised before, it's probably worth ringing your dealer (or a few if necessary) to see whether they're prepared to code a blank card that you have sourced yourself.

As far as I can work out (and I'm basing this on theory rather than fact) card programming is broken down into two distinctive sections:
1) Setting the 'write once memory' on the card with a code that matches that of the car's UCH , ECU and steering lock modules.
2) Setting the car's ECU to recognise the unique serial number (a separate entity) of that card.

The second step may seem redundant at first glance, but in reality it's necessary in order to be able to disable lost or stolen cards.

As I see it, all that has changes is that step 1 is now performed by Renault before the card is shipped to the dealer, making the card useless on any vehicle other than the one that the card was ordered for.
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