What happens if accelerator pedal gets stuck in a push-button car?

I’ve wondered how, with the new keyless push-button ignition gizmos, one should respond should the accelerator pedal get stuck. I asked my mechanic this, she said a creative customer had rolled the window down and thrown the keys out. Does this work? If it shuts the car down, do you then lose brakes, and steering? She also suggested grinding the shift stick into Park. Does this work at 60 mph? What’s the safest way of handling this situation?

Almost every vehicle sold now has a rev limit feature. That means you can’t really destroy an engine by holding the throttle wide open. So if the accelerator does stick open it is recommended that you put the vehicle in neutral so you still have power steering and brakes to pull over and stop. Then you depress the stop start button for about 3 seconds or more and the engine will shut off.

The story about throwing the key out the window will not work. Most vehicles will continue to run even if you drive off and leave the key at home it will just not start again after you shut it off without the key present.

Maybe you should talk to Audi because this person you are talking to may not be fully informed.


I wholeheartedly agree with this! Bump it into neutral. If you hit park, you will destroy the parking pawl witch is INside the transmission so… $$$$$ if you do that.

And accelerator pedals are no longer attached to the engine via a cable, they are “by-wire” with redundant sensors and software to prevent damage should the car detect the pedal is stuck.

Thx too. All makes sense.

An auto electric shop could wire in a kill switch that would definitely turn the engine off, if that was really important to you. It might have other negative consequences though.

Thx. I’m really interested in making sure I can regain control of the car should the throttle get stuck (say under a mat?). Pushing shift to N, being sure engine will not over-rev, seems to do the trick.

I would NOT have a shop mess around with my car’s critical wiring. As others have said, stand on the brakes, put it in neutral, then hold down the button.

1 Like

Yup! Got it!

Thx… Jose

Even if the engine were to over rev, the fact that you still have steering and brakes to safely pull over is better than losing all of that if you shut the engine off. Eventually your engine may be junk, but at least you have a better chance of surviving to try to figure out how to fix your engine. :wink:

1 Like

Do not ask this person for advice or let her work on your car again. Throw the keys out the window?? Really?

To shut a car off with the push button, you push the button for 3-5 seconds and it will shut down. It should say that in the manual. Yes without the engine running it will be harder to steer or brake. If the car is rapidly accelerating and the engine cannot be shut down, shift it to neutral (not park or reverse) and pull to the side of the road.


Probably not. Many if not most push button start cars will continue to run when the key is removed. They’ll make annoying beeping sounds, but won’t turn off. They simply won’t restart after you turn them off. This is so that when you drop your companion off at the store and she runs in with the keys in her purse, you don’t stall out in the middle of the parking lot.

That your mechanic believed this story despite being in a profession in which she should absolutely know how these things work tells me that your mechanic may, in fact, be a moron. :wink:

1 Like

This so-called mechanic also said to force the vehicle into park. Good Greif :roll_eyes:


Yeah I’m think of the poor kid that stuck his foot in the spokes of his bike he was riding. It didn’t end well.