After test driving the 2019 Jaguar F-Pace for a few days I couldn’t help but notice a black wristband sitting in the glove compartment. I thought it was a fitness watch that was left behind by another auto journalist. On closer inspection I saw the word “Jaguar” printed on the black, rubber band and then did some digging in the thick manual.
As it turns out, this buckled strap is an add-on feature in newer-model Jags along with certain Land Rovers – Jaguar’s sister-company. It’s called the Activity Key and offers a solution to a problem I have had for decades. I am a runner and often drive to training grounds, parks and races. I don’t like carrying my car key when I run for fear I may lose it as I traverse up hills and bumpy paths. So I generally hide the car key somewhere around my parked car and hope no one finds it during my run.
The Activity Key takes my worry away. An RFID chip is embedded in the strap which is then worn on your wrist when you are away from the locked car. In fact, you can lock the actual car key inside the vehicle. Once the driver’s door is closed you have 30 seconds to walk to the back of the car and place the Activity Key atop the letter “J” in Jaguar. A small antenna receives the wireless signal from the strap and locks all the doors. You are now free to run, hike, picnic and even swim (the Activity Key is waterproof up to 30m) knowing that no one will find a hidden key in obvious places such as on top of a tire (my usual hiding spot).
To unlock the vehicle, press the trunk release just above the license plate and then touch the Activity Key to the letter “J” again. Boom. All of the doors – including the trunk – are unlocked.
The Activity Key is a $410 option on the F-Pace I tested.
I just want to know where this technology was back in 1995 when I was training for my first marathon. See how it works below: