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Discussion Starter #1
We got our '05 Prius on Saturday and stopped by the dealership today to have the basic Lojack installed. On the ride home, my husband was going through the manual and noticed that Lojack carries a "Starter Disabler" as part of their extra alarm package. He questioned if that was even useful on a Prius. That conversation eventually evolved to include the question, can a Prius be hotwired?

So, out of curiosity, I'm posing/posting that question to you. Of course, if you don't want the general public to know, you're welcome to PM or email me. LOL

A curious Prius owner...
 

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The general consensus is, no. The car can't be hotwired.

What it comes down to is that little keyfob is much, much more secure than any set of conventional keys ever will be. I don't think there are even any physical wires you could touch together to start the car... it's all done by computer!

I'm sure there's a MUCH better way to describe the technical stuff... but I'm no good at explaining that. So this is my lightened-up version :lol:
 

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galaxee said:
The general consensus is, no. The car can't be hotwired.

What it comes down to is that little keyfob is much, much more secure than any set of conventional keys ever will be. I don't think there are even any physical wires you could touch together to start the car... it's all done by computer!

I'm sure there's a MUCH better way to describe the technical stuff... but I'm no good at explaining that. So this is my lightened-up version :lol:
There is absolutely, positively no way to hotwire the Prius. Neither the ICE nor the electric motors will work without the computer, nor will the transmission (even if you could run the motors, they have to be operated at the correct speeds to make the car go anywhere), nor will the inverter ("hotwiring" a motor to DC doesn't do any good).

In other words, without the computer's cooperation, the Prius won't even move. No amount of rewiring will change the fact that you need the computer to make the car move.

The key on the Prius is considered extremely hard to crack. There is no switch to hotwire, nor are there any mechanics to force. You have to send the right code to the computer to get the car to move, and you're not going to do that without one of the keys.

Basically, the only ways that a Prius could be stolen are:

- Carjacking
- Mugging (stealing the keys)
- Towing

Lojack doesn't do a whole lot of good on a Prius - unless you're in an area where carjacking is a threat or are liable to have your keys stolen.
 

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And yet the car does have an "anti-theft system" page 44 in the owners manual. Regardless of the system I don't think it possible to steal the car without the owners keys. Probably the only thief here is the Lo-Jack salesman. Possibly not intentional, just lack of knowledge about the Prius.
...........................................INTERESTING..................................
 

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hyperion said:
Interesting subject to bring up. I don't believe I have ever heard of a Prius being stolen.
From the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety...

All losses are stated in relative terms, with 100 representing the average injury, collision, or theft loss for all cars. For example, a result of 122 is 22 percent worse than average. A result of 96 is 4 percent better than average. The vehicles are listed within each group in ascending sequence of injury claim frequency results. For convenience, the results are color-coded to indicate which ones are better and worse than the average. The results also are adjusted, or standardized, to reduce possible distortions from two nonvehicle factors -- operator age (injury, collision, and theft results) and insurance deductible (collision and theft results only).
 

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first off, the Prius has no starter in the traditional sense (one of the MGs is used to spin up the engine), so you couldn't get the extra features of the higher-level LoJack systems.

With the engine immobilizer in the Prius, there is no hot-wiring. You need the rolling-ID code key.

There is one known reported stolen Prius - the owner dropped the key outside of the vehicle by accident, and when she returned the car was gone, and her key was gone.

Other than theft with a registered key, the only other method to steal a Prius is to take it with a tow-truck. (Note, if you have SE&SS/SKS, and the car is on, it can be driven away without the keyfob even in the car. It just can't be restarted without the keyfob...)

The alarm system for the Prius, besides getting you an insurance discount beyond what the engine immobilizer gets you (please check your policies to make sure you got it!), will have the car beep/flash to alert if someone tries to enter the car to steal the stuff in your car. There is the optional glass breakage sensor (GBS) that'll also alarm if a window is broken.

The basic transponder system for both LoJack and Guidepoint are OK for the Prius. They just help you/the police find your car should it be stolen. Depending on how much you paid, and the discount on your insurance, after a while it might pay for itself, and may also help car resale value. The only additional systems from these vendors that you could get would be the notice service if your vehicle has moved without your knowledge.
 
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To put it bluntly, you threw away money on the lojack. It is overhyped by dealers as there is so much profit in it. The police REALLY do not consider it a priority. Do a search on this forum and priuschat and you'll see.
 

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I agree, the car would be hard to 'hotwire'. The weakest link is indeed the fob's code output. One good news is that the car checks TWICE to get to ready. Once to power up to Ig-On, then one more time the hybrid ECU asks for verification of the fob before going to READY.

You could replace the transponder ECU/fob pair. You'd need the scanner to pair the transponder to the hybrid ECU, as they communicate over a dedicated shared secret encrypted link.
 

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Lojack

If you were to check with your local Police Dept, you'd find out that very few of them have the lojack recovery equipment. I checked all around Northern California and have yet to find a Dept. that has it.
 

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Actually, there is no second check at "ready". It's just
at IG-ON. The key-retension solenoid is disabled in mine so I can
pull it out anytime, and I can go to IG-ON and then pull the
key out, roll down windows and fool around and load
gear, and then go to READY with nothing in the slot.
.
This is non-SKS, just the generic fob...
.
_H*
 

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LoJack

When we purchased our 2002 Prius, our insurance company did not give a discount for LoJack. They said that most of their cost is for medical payouts and liability damage. They said that death, serious injury and vehicle caused property damage far outweigh the cost of repairing or replacing the vehicle. Thus, no discount. Besides, in Arizona, a high percentage of cars are in Mexico a few hours after they are stolen. In many cases, this is even before they are reported missing.
 

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This topic was discussed first about a year ago. I have very strong feelings about this, because I am a staunch law-and-order guy. Without law and order, we cannot have a prosperous society. Indeed, one could argue that without law and order, all is lost, or soon to be.

With this in mind, please hear me out. Let me finish before you spring to your keyboards with your refutals and rebuttals. I must remind you all that Lojack can help in another case:

Carjacking. Because the Prius is so hard to steal by other methods, if somebody is to be successful at stealing my car, it will most likely be at the point of a gun.

In Florida, we have a state law called 10-20-LIFE.

1) Pull a gun in the commision of a crime (even if you don't shoot it): 10 years MANDATORY.
2) Shoot a gun in the commission of a crime: 20 Years
3) Shoot somebody, whether they live or die: 25 years to life - MANDATORY.


You can read about it here.

And you can read the statistics regarding the criminals actually sentenced here.

Of course, if somebody pulls a gun on me, I'll get out of the car. I won't fight him unless somebody else's life (my passenger) hangs in the balance. Whether or not the carjacker pulls the trigger, he's eligible for at least 10 years up the river.

For me, the Lojack system is worth every penny. It's not a waste of money, because I have to help. I have to at least try. And now (before I am carjacked) is the best time to lay the plans.

Yes, even if the worst were to happen and I am shot and killed, it is STILL worth it! There's a better chance WITH Lojack than without it that the police will CAPTURE the person who pulled the gun. As I said, I have to try. I just have to, or I'm not doing my part.

If I'm dead at the hand of a carjacker, well then, I really won't miss the $1,200 or whatever it costed me for the Lojack with the early warning system. But it might help get a criminal off the street for 10, 20, 25 years, OR FOR LIFE. It's worth a try, don't you think?

I've thought about this quite a lot. If I die from a carjacking attempt "gone bad" (really, they're all bad), then at least there's a chance for something lasting and good to come out of it. At least the last thing I do could have a positive impact on society.

If there's one thing we know about crime, it is that 85-95% of all violent felonies are committed by the SAME 5 or 6% of the population who are VIOLENT INDIVIDUALS. The person who pulls a gun on me will no doubt do it again at a later date.

Unless he is caught, tried, convicted, and locked away for a VERY LONG TIME.

So if the worst happens, then at least I TRIED. I TRIED to keep that [email protected] who took my life from taking your life or the life of somebody you love. I did it for YOU. I did it for YOUR family. Your DAUGHTER. Your SON. Your MOTHER. Your FATHER. Your WIFE or HUSBAND, GIRLFRIEND or BOYFRIEND. I did it for your INFANT CHILD.

So that's my reasoning. It's not a waste of money in ANY sense of the word. It's NEVER a waste of money to try to get a violent criminal off the street.

And at the very least, it'll save me the trouble of having to come back and haunt the [email protected]! :D
 

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Hobbit said:
Actually, there is no second check at "ready". It's just
at IG-ON. The key-retension solenoid is disabled in mine so I can
pull it out anytime, and I can go to IG-ON and then pull the
key out, roll down windows and fool around and load
gear, and then go to READY with nothing in the slot.
.
This is non-SKS, just the generic fob...
.
_H*
Hmm, that's interesting. I've actually got a hang at Ig-On when trying to go to READY without the fob present.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
bsoft said:
Lojack doesn't do a whole lot of good on a Prius - unless you're in an area where carjacking is a threat or are liable to have your keys stolen.
Um...I live in Los Angeles County, in what seems to be the carjacking capital of the US. I'm the type that would hand 'em the keys and let 'em go...as long as they can figure out how it works! :wink:
 
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