Recalled Diesel Volkswagens and Audis Stolen From Silverdome Storage

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
recalled diesel volkswagens and audis stolen from silverdome storage

Dozens of recalled Volkswagen diesels have vanished from the Silverdome parking lot in Pontiac, Michigan, over past last week. The stadium was once home to the Detroit Lions and monster truck rallies. Now defunct, it has been converted into a makeshift purgatory for thousands of emission-cheating VW and Audi-branded autos waiting to be fixed and resold.

Michigan authorities are working with out-of-state police to track down over 60 stolen vehicles. Roughly a dozen of the missing cars were located at an auction lot in Clarksville, Indiana, last Friday. Those recovered units have laid the groundwork for how the police are handling the investigation.

“They were given fake titles, Michigan titles, and that’s how they were transported out of state,” Indiana State Police Sgt. Jerry Goodin told the Detroit Free Press on Tuesday. “And that’s how they were being sold, they had bogus titles on them.”

Volkswagen has been keeping track of the vehicles they are buying back. So, when specific vehicle identification numbers starting showing up again in their system, they knew something was amiss. However, by the time someone could do an assessment of the stadium lot, many more had disappeared.

Nine more cars were located in Hardin County, Kentucky, this week — six Passats and three SUVs, according to WDRB-Louisville. “The Oakland County Police Department made contact with Kentucky State Police vehicle investigations because there had been some titles that had been fraudulently attempted to bring into Kentucky,” said Sgt. Jason Morris, public information officer for the Kentucky State Police. “This is not only a multi-county, but multi-state investigation right now.”

More vehicles have cropped up since but authorities have not released any detailed information on how the cars arrived out of state. Likewise, no known charges have been filed, nor have there been any arrests made in relation to the thefts.

A spokesperson from Volkswagen said the company was unable to comment on the ongoing investigation.

(Image: Dave Hogg/ Flickr ( CC BY 2.0)]

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4 of 27 comments
  • Seanx37 Seanx37 on Sep 15, 2017

    Why would VW care? The insurance money is far more than they will get out of all the expenses for these cars. They should "encourage" thieves to steal them all. Or what they should have done in the first place. Stripped the cars, and sold the parts.

    • See 1 previous
    • Seanx37 Seanx37 on Sep 15, 2017

      @bikegoesbaa Should have left the keys on a board by the gate. "If you can match the keys to the car, it's all yours!" Make it entertaining.

  • WildcatMatt WildcatMatt on Sep 29, 2017

    So much stupid here. I have neighbors with security cameras to watch for people stealing $1.37 in change overnight from their unlocked cars, but apparently VW didn't point a single camera at this erstwhile holding area? I hope VW gets billed for the costs incurred by the various local agencies that will have to track these cars down. Also, it seems pretty likely that someone is eventually going to get caught and go to jail for this... It would seem like the smarter thing to have done would have been to ship them to Mexico or the middle east where it's unlikely they would wind up cross-referenced and detected.

  • MaintenanceCosts I saw my first IS500 out in the wild today (a dark-grey-on-black example) and it struck me that it was much more AMG-like than this product. (Great-looking and -sounding car.)
  • ToolGuy
  • Art Vandelay Props for trying something different. EVs should work well in this sort of race. The similar series running ICE run short distances like that
  • ToolGuy Well they wet the track down using sea water - from the South Pacific Ocean. Oceans may have a large amount of water, but it isn't infinite, is it? No, it isn't. So if this sport really takes off, what will happen when the ocean is drained? (And once you put the water on the dirt, how does it ever get back to the ocean?)
  • Bobbysirhan Some friends of mine were dazzled by a CUE demo that circulated on YouTube before this car reached the market. I was bewildered why anyone wanted a car as durable and dependable as their cellphones, but to each their own. One of them did actually show up with an XTS V-sport when the car first came out. He showed people CUE in my driveway, but I don't recall him offering demonstration rides to the assembled imported luxury car drivers. In the months that followed, I never saw or heard about the Cadillac again. He went back to driving his Yukon Denali until I moved away a year or two later.