Pocket-sized status symbols

It used to be that you had to go out and buy a nice flashy keyring to tell the world about your premium ride. After all, relatively plain, black keys don't do much to inspire others to be jealous, or the girls to be more friendly. If you wanted to flaunt your ride socially, you had to stick the key on a branded ring.

Nowadays, however, in the age of multifunction key fobs, that's over. The fobs themselves have glitz factors all their own. Take, for example, the Bentley Continental GT/Flying Spur/GTC key fob. There are automobiles who's on-body badging is less detailed than the "winged B" on the Continental's key. And it's a substantial, weighty little bauble, as our own John Neff noted when he took delivery of our Flying Spur tester. It oozes quality and exclusivity. Attaching a real keyring to it, like the one in the photo, borders on being obnoxious.

Many other automakers are taking a similar approach, making the fob as visually arresting as possible. Brands like Jaguar and Cadillac leverage their well-known logos. Others go for a more high-tech approach, eschewing the traditional key altogether in favor of keyless entry and start systems that let the fob stay tucked away. Since keys are slowly going the way of the dodo, it's only natural that the electronic fobs that replace them become more ornamental. After all, most of the time, they never need to see daylight. For those occasions when they do, it makes sense for them to be as slick and recognizable as possible.

Edmunds has selected the top 10 key fobs out there today. We've listed their selections after the jump..

Thanks to Lucy for the tip!

[Source: Edmiunds}

Edmunds.com's Top 10 Most fabulous Key Fobs

1. Bentley Flying Spur and Continental GT

2. Mercedes-Benz

3. Jaguar XK

4. Land Rover Range Rover Sport and LR3

5. Audi

6. BMW 3, 5, 6 and 7 Series

7. Lexus

8. Volvo S80

9. Infiniti

10. Cadillac

Read the full article here. Edmunds explains its picks and has photos of each one.

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