Engine start-stop buttons used to be a novelty, but now they’re found in most vehicles on the market.
While most car ignitions are pretty standard and mundane, some automakers go out of their way to make them unique and stand out. Here are some of the most unique engine start buttons we’ve seen over the years.
10. Chevrolet Camaro
It’s not terribly exciting, but the new 2016 Chevrolet Camaro bucks the trend because it’s a rectangular shape instead of a typical circular button.
9. BMW i3
The BMW i3 has a lot of things going for it that makes it stand out, and the location of its engine start-stop button is even more unique. It’s found on the shifter stalk and it might be the only vehicle in the world that has it there.
If you have never been in a Tesla or driven one, you might be surprised to hear why it’s on our list. That’s because Tesla vehicles don’t actually have an ignition. You simply sit in it and once the car detects the key, you simply push the brake pedal and the car starts. So in a way, the brake pedal serves as the car’s ignition.
7. Mercedes SLS AMG
Over the years, Mercedes has gotten clever with the placement of its car ignitions and the SLS AMG is one of the cooler ones. Located in a sea of carbon fiber goodness, the SLS AMG’s engine start button is black, but with red accents, making it stand out.
6. Mercedes SLR McLaren
Then there’s the Mercedes SLS McLaren, one of the world’s most rare exotics. Underneath that panel on the shifter is where the start button is located, making its driver feel like James Bond when it comes to firing up the car. Mercedes also used a similar treatment on its E-Class model, putting the start button on top of the shifter – but it didn’t have a cool panel that you had to flip up to use it.
5. Aston Martin
Aston Martin loves putting fine details throughout its vehicles, and its ignition is one of the most luxurious we have ever seen. Some of its models take advantage of the fine crystal key to double up as its start button.
The button itself is a bit plain, but it’s Ferrari and the fact that it’s located on the steering wheel makes you feel like a race car driver. Oh and it’s red. Of course it’s red.
3. Volvo XC90
Volvo hasn’t taken its resurgence lightly and is shaping up to become a real threat in the luxury automotive space. Just look at how unique the engine start button is on the new XC90!
While Ferrari keeps it more subtle by placing its engine start button on the steering wheel, Lamborghini has it front and center on numerous models. In the Huracan for example, there’s a panel inspired by jet fighters that you flip up before you can access the button. There’s a similar treatment in the Aventador, but that one does a better job at hiding the button underneath.
So how is it possible that at the end of our list, the most unique car ignition we have is in a MINI? Well, for several reasons: it’s different, it’s cool and best of all, it’s practical. Unlike some of the other cars on the list that most people will never even get an opportunity to drive around, the MINI is affordable, which means there’s a good chance you will see this start button up close and personal one day. Located in the middle of toggle switches, the MINI’s ignition looks like a key and stands out from your typical button.
Discuss this story on our MINI Forum