What’s the most mundane part of a car? There are certainly plenty of candidates, and the ignition key could rank among them. Whether it’s a simple piece of metal or a small electronic box transmitting a wireless signal, most of the time these bits are as uninspiring as a broken washing machine. That is, except when they’re freaking awesome.

For the most part, automotive keys are created solely for functionality. Some, however, are pretty darned cool while others are borderline works of art. We could wax poetic about the symbolic meaning of the key; it’s the singular device that brings the car to life, and it's also a part of the car that always stays with the driver.

But this isn’t a website for philosophy. We talk about cool car stuff, and while most keys are boring, there are some that are awesome enough to simply collect. Some of these are old school aftermarket designs, others are straight from automakers and represent the latest in ultra high-tech, but we’d love to put them all on display in our living room.

Got a tip for us? Email: tips@motor1.com