Yes, it is possible to make a car key based on the VIN number of the vehicle, but it depends! Our entire lives revolve around our cars, which we don’t realize until the car isn’t working or we can’t get into it. Many of us would not even be able to work without a vehicle. That is why losing your set of car keys can be so devastating. Not having an extra key can make things more stressful. However, if you ever lose the only set of car keys, don’t panic because a copy can still be made even if the original isn’t with you.

What Type of Replacement Key Do You Need?

The first step is to figure out what type of key you need to be made. If you own a pre-1981 vehicle, you’ll need a simple key that’s cut out of a key block. The later model cars have transponder keys. The keys are programmed to work with the car with safety chips embedded in them. So, even if you get the transponder key cut, it will not be able to turn the car on without it being paired to the car.

The third type of key is the smart car key. Think of them as a sort of remote, which isn’t like traditional keys because they look like a key fob but don’t require conventional means of ignition like turning the key.

The Original Key Isn’t Present

The option here will be to return to the car dealer to get a replacement. However, the key is going to be expensive, especially if the vehicle has to be towed. That said, a more affordable solution is to hire a professional automotive locksmith. Many established car deals have a Professional Automotive Locksmith working for them who handles the task of cutting and programming the key for 50% of what they charge you.

A seasoned locksmith will be able to make a key for you without needing the original. However, you’ll need to supply the locksmith with the required information.

What Does the Locksmith Need to Know?

The year, make, and model of the car will need to be provided to the Locksmith. Also, prove that you are the owner of the vehicle with your title and registration. The VIN will also need to be provided.

The VIN number is usually printed on the driver’s side of the car’s doorpost, or it will be stamped on to a metal plate located on the driver’s end of the dashboard. The key identification number can also be found in the vehicle’s user manual, but not having it isn’t going to be a problem. The objective is to try and prove to the locksmith that you own the vehicle.


While it is possible to make a car key via just the VIN number, it is essential to prove that you own the vehicle. An automotive locksmith is your best bet regardless of the type of car you own.  The second best is the car’s dealership.