Lock them Hellcats up!
An investigative report out of Miami highlights what we already know: car thieves are drawn to Dodge Hellcats as if they were catnip. This information is apparently shocking to certain people who haven’t been paying attention, so we want to help spread the word further. If you or someone you know has a Hellcat or is considering getting one, taking extra steps to secure the car is an absolute necessity. Even if Hellcat thefts haven’t become common where you live, it’s only a matter of time before they do.
Thanks to high used car prices, your car is already a big theft target. Learn more about the current situation here.
The Broward Sheriff’s Office told journalists it’s been focusing on HEAT or High End Auto Theft lately. There’s been a dramatic rise in coordinated theft of luxury cars like Mercedes, Range Rovers, etc. We’ve seen car theft levels nationwide shoot up quickly starting in the spring of last year, with luxury vehicles being obvious targets. Of course, Dodge Hellcats are even more attractive targets.
In the report from Miami, journalists highlighted two specific cases of Hellcat theft. In one, the thieves tried to steal a guy’s car from his driveway late at night, but a neighbor scared them away. Then the thieves returned a few nights later and finished the job. Why he didn’t garage the car after the first attempt isn’t clear, but that might have saved his Dodge.
As for the second case, the thieves disabled the LoJack tracker on it after swiping the Hellcat. Then a few days later the police tried pulling the vehicle over, but the driver led them on a chase through 3 counties before finally ditching the muscle car.
In fact, the area has seen a dramatic rise in Hellcats being targeted starting in 2021. We’re actually surprised they weren’t already the hottest rides to boost last year, but that’s the story law enforcement is telling and we’ll just take their word for it.
As detailed out in the report, many thieves bring a laptop and a blank Dodge key. Using the wiring harness in the Hellcat, they’ll program the key to work on the muscle car right there, a process which can take only moments. We’ve covered surveillance videos showing these kinds of thefts before, and sadly we know we’ll probably keep covering this topic.
Stellantis has been working on releasing a security upgrade for its high-powered models which would limit power if someone fails to type the right code into the infotainment screen upon starting the car. Whether or not this will stop the flurry of Hellcat thefts remains to be seen, but we’re hopeful it works. However, the security fix was supposed to be deployed in the latter part of the second quarter, which is right now, and there’s been no official update, so we’re guessing it’s been delayed. We’ve reached out to Stellantis and are waiting to hear back.
Ultimately, if a thief really wants your car, they’re likely going to find a way to get it. The whole point is to make it less attractive than other options. While we could list off all the ways to secure your ride, it’s better if people are doing different things so it keeps thieves on their toes, so we’ll leave it at that.
Source: 7 News Miami