Kia and Hyundai thefts contribute to auto parts shortage in St. Louis
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - Through the month of September, there were 5,085 reports of vehicle thefts in St. Louis alone. Often, theft victims recover their vehicles after the stolen cars were left abandoned, but most are in need of repairs.
Olivia Puricelli’s brother is a Kia owner who was the victim of vehicle theft.
“He got his car back it was totaled, it was wrecked. Everything was destroyed,” she said.
Everything Automotive in south St. Louis City has seen its share of stolen Kia and Hyundai vehicles in need of repairs.
“I’d say in the past two months we’ve done about 20 of them or so,” Dallas Roberts said. He is a co-owner.
Roberts said parts for Kia and Hyundai vehicles are on backorder and can take months to arrive. He’s turned to finding parts through a network of salvage yards in the Midwest. Especially for hard-to-find car windows.
“We’ve been sourcing most of them from junk yards but that has been running scarcer and scarcer, and those parts are getting more expensive. Where a window was like $80, now it’s like $200,” Roberts said.
One thing Roberts said he always keeps in stock are steering wheel locks. He said he always offers to sell Kia and Hyundai owners one of the anti-theft devices, with no markup. He said he wants to keep the cars from being stolen while parked and waiting for the parts needed to complete repairs.
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