Drilling a Hole in Certain BMWs May Not Trigger the Alarm System

Broken Into BMW 3 Series 14 photos
Photo: Castelinoz on Reddit / autoevolution edit
Parts Have Been StolenThe Hole2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper2016 BMW 3 Series Facelift Wallpaper
No, it's not a loophole! A literal hole was drilled into multiple BMWs by determined thieves so they can steal some important parts. One unlucky owner discovered that this unbelievable theft method worked after they found the vehicle with a cannonball-sized hole in the driver’s side door.
If creativity is required on the job, then car thieves are among the most imaginative people out there. Or, are they so well versed in how some vehicles are manufactured that they know exactly where to find the weak spots? No matter what we might be thinking about these people’s idea of a workday, one thing remains true – if your car is well-equipped… Well, it might also be wearing an invisible target.

A BMW 3 Series owner shared on Reddit that his car was broken into and said other vehicles parked nearby shared a similar fate. The owner found a weird hole in the driver’s side door, which was a clear sign that something bad had happened. Sadly, the thieves managed to silently get inside the car and steal the steering wheel, the dashboard, the infotainment screen, and the media playing unit together with the A/C controls. In the process, they also ran off with a trim piece.

The older 3 Series appears to feature the M Sport package, which tells us that the steering wheel alone might be worth around $400-$500 or more. Considering the thieves might have hit multiple cars with the same method, they had a pretty successful night of breaking the law and leaving some nasty surprises for the vehicle owners.

A couple of people on the online platform were quick to call out BMW for not making cars that are harder to break into, with some saying that if a loophole is discovered in the alarm system, the marque should initiate a recall. That’s somewhat absurd, considering the thieves drilled or cut through the door to gain access inside the car.

Parts Have Been Stolen
Photo: Castelinoz on Reddit
Such a destructive entry was also done carefully, and it looks like the thieves aimed to bypass the alarm system by working the door opening mechanism without triggering the right sensors. They might have cut the electronics and that stopped the vehicle from issuing a noisy alert.

On the other hand, some older cars have such sensitive alarm systems that one kick in the tire is enough to activate them. So, if the automaker isn’t going to investigate and find a fix, the problem remains in the insurer’s hands.

But since this seems like the work of someone intimately familiar with BMWs, it’s unlikely the manufacturer will start an investigation that can result in a fix.

Fortunately, the insurer told this Netherlands-based BMW owner that the damage will be covered. But he’ll most likely have to get new car keys after the repair is done. In similar cases, the thieves remembered the vehicle, copied the key, and returned to steal the whole car, not just some of its parts.

Finally, it’s worth noting that the Bavarians are coding important car parts to work only on specific vehicles. But as it turns out, nefarious actors found a way to bypass even this little-known security measure.

If you own a similar BMW and live in an area that’s prone to stuff like this happening, maybe you should consider adding a steel plate in the door or, better yet, find a good storage place.
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About the author: Florin Amariei
Florin Amariei profile photo

Car shows on TV and his father's Fiat Tempra may have been Florin's early influences, but nowadays he favors different things, like the power of an F-150 Raptor. He'll never be able to ignore the shape of a Ferrari though, especially a yellow one.
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