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Old 12-17-2013, 08:34 PM   #4
Certified Boxster Addict
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 7,573
There are two parts to a Porsche key: the immobilizer transmitter which is built into the fob part of the key and the blade which is cut to operate the mechanical portion of the ignition switch.

You can buy both parts (un-programmed key fob and blank blade) fairly affordably online.

Some key shops (and a few online key cutters) can cut the blank ignition key to operate the ignition switch.

The more difficult part is programming the immobilizer transmitter in the key fob to match the immobilizer code of the car (the immobilizer is under the drivers seat and is part of the anti-theft system). If the code in the key fob does not match the code of the immobilizer under the seat (even if the key turns the ignition), the engine won't start.

The programming of a key to an immobilizer can only be done by someone with a PIWIS, which is a Porsche test system that can only be leased from Porsche (can't be purchased).

All dealers have a PIWIS and a few indy repair shops. Hence, those are the only places that can program your new key properly and they tend to charge a pretty penny.

And just in case you think about obtaining an immobilizer and two keys from a recycler or salvage yard, you'll also need the ECU and will need to swap all three (key, immobilizer, and ECU) components at the same time because the ECU is coded to the immobilizer.

About now, you're probably ready to start cussing at Porsche about this situation. All I can say is Welcome to the Porsche "single key problem" club!
1999 996 C2 - sold - bought back - sold for more
1997 Spec Boxster BSR #254
1979 911 SC
POC Licensed DE/TT Instructor

Last edited by thstone; 12-17-2013 at 08:45 PM.
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