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M3 card stolen, new iPhone not yet setup as key...but still can drive?

QT123

Member
Oct 3, 2018
9
1
Los Angeles
My wife’s key card was stolen this week. Her new iPhone of course wasn’t setup yet as a key, but for some reason, she can still drive the car. Also, FYI, the thief snatched her backpack with key card in wallet as she was walking away with our kids, and before it theoretically had time to auto-lock. The key card, however, was in the car (not in its special spot though). Her phone (again, signed into our account, but not setup as key) was with her as she walked away.

So we’re a little confused how she’s still able to drive the car. Any thoughts?
 
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Tam

Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2012
9,478
8,629
Visalia, CA
...walked away...

The owner's manual says that key card does not have automatic walk-away lock, only cell phone key does.

If her phone was not setup as a key, there is no automatic walk-away lock for her.

You can go to the car display to see how many cell phones are setup as keys.
 

QT123

Member
Oct 3, 2018
9
1
Los Angeles
That’s helpful re: walk-away. Thank you. But — I still don’t understand how she can drive the car with no key and phone not setup as key (but logged into the account).
 

dhanson865

Active Member
Feb 16, 2013
4,755
8,974
Knoxville, Tennessee
Once turned on and driven you can continue to drive without a key until you turn it off. If that is what she did there should be no wondering why.

If you are saying she can turn the car off, leave it, come back later, turn it on, and drive it day after day with no key then you are describing something that shouldn't happen and there is a card or phone authorizing use that you aren't aware of.
 
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QT123

Member
Oct 3, 2018
9
1
Los Angeles
Bizarrely enough, the latter is exactly what's happening. The bag/card were stolen 48 hours ago, and she's driven the car to and from work, leaving it off, parked at her office, then coming home, the whole time. We only have two cards, mine is 1000% in my wallet inside the house, and mine is the only other phone with access to our account. And like I said -- her's is signed into the app, but not setup as a key.
 

ceekz

Member
May 14, 2018
465
477
Sacramento, CA
It's entirely possible it's in the car somewhere, but I tore through it last night for about 45 minutes and didn't see it anywhere -- much less in the center console. It's so bizarre.
I bought a valet key card holder to use with my card because within hours of delivery, I dropped the card and didn’t realize it. Spent 15 minutes searching. Then I ordered new LEDs for the interior lights. Too much black on black!
 

hamtonp

Member
Sep 4, 2018
176
265
Dallas
Check the car settings to see which key or phone is active? While you are in there, remove the stolen key. I'm not sure you can remove a key card but I'm sure you can remove a phone.
 

SDKoala

Model 3 LR RWD
Apr 11, 2018
867
979
San Diego
Sounds like not all the facts are accurate.
Check the list of devices to see what is paired and when it was last used.
The range for the card is measured in inches so can’t remotely lock anything.

Exactly. Why are people suggesting that the key being lost in the car would allow the car to be driven? The range of the card reader is inches, not feet. Even if the key is somewhere in the car, there's no way for the car to know that it's there unless it is tapped on the card reader.

Unless the car's locking ability is seriously malfunctioning, something's not adding up. I don't we're getting all the information, especially if the auto-lock feature was previously working, which it wouldn't be if the key card was being used. OP needs to check what keys are recognized by the car. I wouldn't be surprised if the wife's phone is listed on there.
 

QT123

Member
Oct 3, 2018
9
1
Los Angeles
Alright folks. Much appreciate the expert sleuthing. Unfortunately -- it's as suspected. Something very strange is going on.

Reminder of details:
-- Wife's key card was stolen on Oct 2.
-- Her new iPhone is logged into our account on the app, but not setup as a key.
-- Nor is it registered in the system (as you can see).
-- The only other key and phone are mine (which activated when I got in the car to take this pic).
-- My phone obviously stays with me (I barely drive it), and my card is always (and currently) in my wallet.

Somehow she's driven her car to work 5 miles away from home, every day, parked there, worked 9 hours, drove home, parked at home, charged, etc, every day since Oct 2.

Apologies if this is hard to read!
 

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Kermee

It's Not Easy Being Green
Jul 31, 2018
507
760
WA, BC & HKG
My assumption, and I could be wrong:

1. Wife gets into car to drive to work.
2. Your phone is close enough to the car where it thinks it's active.
3. Wife puts car into gear, drives off.
4. Car no longer sees any active keys, phone, key-card or otherwise.
5. Wife gets to work, exits the vehicle.
6. Car never locks or shuts off for 9 hours, stays in Park because since the vehicle was already "On" and in gear when the "Active" key disappeared, it won't auto-lock and shutoff.
7. Wife goes back to car, opens door, puts the car back into gear and drives home.

This is just a theory.
 

Need

Active Member
Nov 22, 2017
2,989
2,306
Rancho Cucamonga
The latter half is maybe possible -- but when she leaves for work, I've been gone for an hour, miles down the road, phone and key with me.

Just curious, why would you not leave her your keycard if your know her keycard is missing? I know you want to test this oddity and all, but there is nothing wrong for her to have a backup in case the car won't start for her the next time?
 
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Kermee

It's Not Easy Being Green
Jul 31, 2018
507
760
WA, BC & HKG
The latter half is maybe possible -- but when she leaves for work, I've been gone for an hour, miles down the road, phone and key with me.

Yeah. I guess it's that part where the behavior has to be verified.

We all know that "Auto Lock" when using a "Keycard" doesn't work; You're suppose to tap the pillar with your "Keycard" when you exit the vehicle to "Lock" the vehicle. "Auto Lock" is only a feature when "Phone as a Key" (Or maybe with the new Model 3 fob too since it supports Bluetooth) when the Model 3 detects the phone is no longer in the cabin and has moved out of range. Also, my assumption is your wife has no way to lock the vehicle after she exits. So, there's no way to lock the vehicle when she gets to work.

If the car is turned on or put into gear, specifically via the "Phone as a Key" method and not via the "Keycard", while the car is on and in gear and the phone is no longer detected (i.e. You're gone for hours, phone and key with you miles away), I don't think the car ever "shuts off"... Can probably test this theory by:

1. Get into car using "Phone as Key".
2. Put the car into gear and drive a bit.
3. Turn off Bluetooth on your phone or put into Airplane mode.
4. Stop and exit the vehicle. Close the door.
5. Wait some time... Maybe, not 9 hours.
6. Re-enter the door and see if the car is still on and allows you to drive off.

Again, this is just a theory. ;)
 

QT123

Member
Oct 3, 2018
9
1
Los Angeles
Just curious, why would you not leave her your keycard if your know her keycard is missing? I know you want to test this oddity and all, but there is nothing wrong for her to have a backup in case the car won't start for her the next time?

Honestly it's because at this point, we've been both fascinated/troubled/trying to figure out why it's possible, and also because she said she'll just grab an Uber home! Nothing that'll go on forever but would like to get to the bottom of it soonish so we can explain to Tesla.
 

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