Will Your Next Car Come with a Remote Kill Switch?

October 16th, 2014 by

carLenders are always looking for new, innovated ways to make sure borrowers make their payments each month and the latest idea is to equip vehicles with a kill switch. It’s definitely something that will get your attention but is it a good idea? The answer really depends on whether you’re the lender or the borrower.

Due to the recession and slow recovery of the economy, many lenders are choosing to lend money to a large number of subprime borrowers to purchase automobiles. Subprime is simply the word giving to borrowers who have a less than perfect credit score. Many lenders simply refuse to lend money to subprime borrowers but for those that do, they want to make sure they get their payments each month.

Since lending to someone with a poor credit history is risky, many of these lenders feel like they need more than a simple signature to close the deal. Having a kill switch that can be activated remotely may sound a little extravagant but it’s certainly motivation for the borrower to get that payment in on time.

How Does the Remote Kill Switch Work?

When a lender decides to give an auto loan to a subprime borrower, they install a device called a kill switch on that vehicle before the person drives it off the lot. This device allows them to disable the ignition by remote control using their computer or even their Smartphone.

This device also has built-in GPS technology that makes it possible for the lender to track the location of the vehicle. This way, they always know where the auto is located and if it’s in motion or parked. When the borrower gets behind on payments, the lender simply disables the ignition at their discretion using the remote and the vehicle will not start.

How Do You Feel about This Device?

Some people believe this type of device is an invasion of privacy and that it should be illegal. Others feel like as long as the borrower knows the device is installed and they agree to it, then it’s perfectly legal. It has allowed thousands of people to buy new or used vehicles that otherwise wouldn’t qualify.

However, many of these borrowers have said that when the lender disabled the ignition, it put them and their family in a dangerous situation. An article published by The New York Times will provide more information about the device and you can learn how one woman says it affected her life and put her child in danger.

Image your child being sick or injured and you’re trying to take him to the hospital and you discover the kill switch has been engaged. Perhaps you’re a few days late on your payment while waiting for your paycheck and you lose your job because the lender hit the kill switch and you have no way to get to work. Both would be a horrible feeling that could have serious complications.

How would you feel about buying a car that come with a remote kill switch? Would you agree to have this device installed or do you believe it could put your life and that of your family in jeopardy?

Posted in Car Buying