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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-23-2006, 08:27 PM Thread Starter
 
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Default NEW THEFT WARNING! PLEASE BE AWARE!

My husband and I recently left our 2005 Prius in Long Term Parking Lot #3 at LaGuardia Airport in NYC for 2 days. Upon our return, OUR HEADLIGHTS WERE COMPLETELY GONE!!!! The new racket is using crowbars to pry the metal away from the headlights in order to take the "lighter" for the HID headlights. Apparently, they sell them on the black market so that $*#&^ punks can hot-rod their old POS's. (They are also using them as unsuspecting weapons.) It is going to be over a $10,000 repair job, including a new hood, new fenders, new front bumber and an entire system that turns on the headlights. It will probably take more than 2 months to repair, as there are so many parts that must be ordered that the Toyota dealership said they would be coming from all over the world! They even jacked up the windshield wiper fluid bottle.

This is happening to the following cars that I am aware of: Lexus, Prius and Nissan and any other new cars that have the HID headlights.

Oh, and Toyota's anti-theft deterant system does NOT activate because it is not rigged to activate for anything other than glass breakage and cabin entry.

It is a little known scam right now, but police around the country that are aware are trying to crack down on older cars that appear to have the HID's. NYPD's finest at LaGuardia thought the theft had to do with the light bulbs (which are expensive). We plan on contacting them tomorrow to tell them the real deal.

Good luck and let's hope that Toyota can find a remedy for this unfortunate situation.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-24-2006, 09:17 AM
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Not a little known scam at all. Several threads on it here and on PriusChat.

As for alarm, the hood is supposed to be protected by a "courtesy" switch. Not sure if that is a pin switch which would trip if the hood was pried away even if the latch remained, or it is part of the latch assembly, which would mean that the latch would have to be opened for the alarm to trip.
Glass breakage sensor is a dealer installed accessory option, and not part of any package. Most of us don't have it.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-24-2006, 09:29 AM
 
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I wrote a note at http://www.directed.com/contact/suggestion.asp to suggest that Viper alarms be made more Prius-fob-compatible so we'd be able to install loud, sensitive alarms that didn't make us carry an extra fob, which would help stop this kind of stuff. I don't usually leave my car in places where a better alarm is a necessity so I never broke down and got whatever alarm would fit. I'm assuming a broken window is all I'd get due to the built-in alarm when it's parked at home or the patrolled lot at work.

Maybe if everybody wrote them, they'd get the message...
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