Jetta Anti-theft effectiveness

charliestl

New member
Joined
May 27, 2009
Location
Eureka, MO
TDI
2009 Jetta TDI Manual
Hi,

I'm moving from a private rural area to a dense, urban area. There's not necessarily an excessive amount of crime, but I have had friends get their cars stolen/broken-into before in recent years.

Does anybody have experience with the effectiveness of the Jetta anti-theft system? I am thinking about getting The Club, but I'm not sure if that would be redundant with the onboard security system. I'd appreciate any thoughts on the matter. I have an 09 Jetta TDI, manual, fyi.
 

securityguy

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2009
Location
Virginia
TDI
2009 Jetta TDI Sedan
If a thief wants your car...he'll get it. Factory systems are only so good and act more as a deterent. However, a professional will get your car if he wants it. I think the Club is a good idea if you're that concerned about theft or, better yet, go to a professional automotive alarm installer and a have a specific device installed (fuel pump shut-off, etc.) that will only make it that more difficult to steal...and I'm not talking about a Best Buy store. There are some very good aftermarket options that supplement your factory system.

Just my 2 cents;)
 

LiLredTDI

Veteran Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2008
Location
maryland
TDI
2004 jetta tdi pd-1989 Jetta IDI-1994 F-250 IDI Turbo
I honestly think the club is the best idea. You def know it is there, it's cheap and is a good deterrent for the thief to move to the next car. A fuel or ignition cutoff is nice, but the thief will only figure it out after he has hammered a screw driver into the column or however you steal a VW.
 

mtbr297

Vendor
Joined
Nov 3, 2002
Location
Bogata TX., USA
TDI
2015 Golf Wagon TDI, Seat Leon FR PD 150 6 speed.
My understanding is the immobilizer kills everything in the car. A thief would have to have your key to start the car. If he just had a key cut it still wouldn't start the car. It has to be matched and programed to the car. Also look at statistics, how many vw's are stolen. Suv's and american built cars are the most stolen cars around not vw's.
 

40X40

Experienced
Joined
Feb 12, 2006
Location
Kansas City area, MO
TDI
2013 Passat SEL Premium
charliestl said:
Hi,

I'm moving from a private rural area to a dense, urban area. There's not necessarily an excessive amount of crime, but I have had friends get their cars stolen/broken-into before in recent years.

Does anybody have experience with the effectiveness of the Jetta anti-theft system? I am thinking about getting The Club, but I'm not sure if that would be redundant with the onboard security system. I'd appreciate any thoughts on the matter. I have an 09 Jetta TDI, manual, fyi.

You can influence the likelihood of car theft through a careful choice of neighborhood. East St. Louis is a never, ever go... Overland Park, KS is not too bad. Move into the best place you can afford. :) Don't leave ANYTHING valuable in the car, ever.

Bill
 

PDJetta

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 6, 2003
Location
Northern Virginia
TDI
'04 Jetta GLS TDI Pumpe Duce Platinum Grey w/ Leather
charliestl said:
Hi,

I'm moving from a private rural area to a dense, urban area. There's not necessarily an excessive amount of crime, but I have had friends get their cars stolen/broken-into before in recent years.

Does anybody have experience with the effectiveness of the Jetta anti-theft system? I am thinking about getting The Club, but I'm not sure if that would be redundant with the onboard security system. I'd appreciate any thoughts on the matter. I have an 09 Jetta TDI, manual, fyi.
The biggie I have read about is that a thief can jam a screwdriver into the driver's door lock and unlock the car and get inside. Your lock is now fubared. I guess that may beat getting a window smashed. I have no idea if VW fixed this weak link on newer models.

--Nate
 

Ed's TDI

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Jan 30, 2001
Location
Victoria, BC, Canada
TDI
2001 Bora and 2016 Touareg
PDJetta said:
The biggie I have read about is that a thief can jam a screwdriver into the driver's door lock and unlock the car and get inside. Your lock is now fubared. I guess that may beat getting a window smashed. I have no idea if VW fixed this weak link on newer models.

--Nate
The reason thieves can get into your car this way is because VW's that have the window/lock control enabled through the door lock don't have any sort of chip-detection like the Immobilizer in the ignition.

After having my car broken into via this method, I bought a blank cylinder and keyless cap from VW and removed the door lock cylinder, eliminating the key (or screwdriver) access altogether. This has been done on both my TDI's and as far as I'm concerned it should be one of the first mods done to any newer TDI!
 

loaba

Veteran Member
Joined
May 10, 2009
Location
Albuquerque, NM
TDI
12 Jetta Sportwagen
40X40 said:
You can influence the likelihood of car theft through a careful choice of neighborhood. East St. Louis is a never, ever go... Overland Park, KS is not too bad. Move into the best place you can afford. :) Don't leave ANYTHING valuable in the car, ever.

Bill
Bill score's a hit: #1, never leave anything of value in the car, visible anyway. Also, as someone else said, get a club. It's cheap, effective and they can see it. If you can deter the casual thief, looking for the easy mark, you're 90% there.
 

40X40

Experienced
Joined
Feb 12, 2006
Location
Kansas City area, MO
TDI
2013 Passat SEL Premium
loaba said:
Bill score's a hit: #1, never leave anything of value in the car, visible anyway. Also, as someone else said, get a club. It's cheap, effective and they can see it. If you can deter the casual thief, looking for the easy mark, you're 90% there.

Thanks!

I use a trick I learned years ago. I go to WallyWorld and get a towel the same color as the car interior. I throw the towel over whatever I wish to hide. Medium tint on the windows work the best. The perp must THINK he can see there is nothing to see.....

Misdirection at its' best.

Bill
 

dzcad90

Rolex & gin
Joined
Mar 15, 1999
Location
Joliet, IL USA
TDI
Jetta - 97 (RIP), '03 (Sold), '09
I used to think the Immobilizer was a fairly good system at preventing theft. I guess it's good against your average street thug, however I've learned that for less than $50 you can get most any immobilizer 2,3, or 4 car moving in about 2 minutes as long as you can brute-force the ignition lock cylinder.

Anyone who wants your particular VW this much knows this information as well.
 

loaba

Veteran Member
Joined
May 10, 2009
Location
Albuquerque, NM
TDI
12 Jetta Sportwagen
I think there are really two kinds of (car) thieves; the pro and the amateur. The amateur is far more common the pro, so I would focus my security measures against him.
 

Steve-o

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 13, 1999
Location
Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon
PDJetta said:
And I don't think a pro would bother with stealing a TDI!
Maybe not for your local chop shop. But any thief might want what's IN the car. So in addition to not leaving the nice stuff in plain sight, consider hiding the items that give the impression that there's something worthwhile if they rummage around some. Don't leave suction-cup marks from your nav system on the glass or take your iPod and leave the dock. Don't leave the Target bag in the car even if it's only carrying toilet paper. The more your car looks like you just got it, the less likely there's anything which will catch a thief's interest.
 

MonsterTDI09

TDIClub Enthusiast, Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2009
Location
NoVa/NJ
TDI
2010 Jetta DSG/ up keep on 2009 Jetta DSG 2006 Jetta Pag 2 in North SEA Green
The club is a joke if a pro wants your car they will get it by any means. The car will not start with out codes from the key.
 

loaba

Veteran Member
Joined
May 10, 2009
Location
Albuquerque, NM
TDI
12 Jetta Sportwagen
MonsterTDI09 said:
The club is a joke if a pro wants your car they will get it by any means.
Agreed - but it might deter the casual thief. Also, if you can help it, keep the stock radio. That's another big draw.
 

Joe_Meehan

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Sep 3, 2005
Location
Ohio USA
TDI
NB TDI, 2002.5, Silver
The best is the one they are not thinking of.

The best one I have ever seen was on the old bugs (like 1960). They did not have a gas gauge so they have a three position fuel lever. Normal, Reserve, and off. You used normal until it stopped and then you moved it to reserve and headed to the gas station. Off was used when you left the car. Since most people did not know about it, the typical thief would jump in hot wire it and drive off. They would not get far, but likely into traffic and the car would stop dead with no apparent reason. Since they don't really like working a some car that they just stole in the middle of the road, most would just leave it.

Next best is to instal a hidden switch, that your just turn off say the fuel pump.
 

PDJetta

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 6, 2003
Location
Northern Virginia
TDI
'04 Jetta GLS TDI Pumpe Duce Platinum Grey w/ Leather
I did the hidden fuel cut-off switch on my '85 Jetta TD. It was a switch inline to the power wire to the fuel cut-off solinoid on the pump.

I saw a video of a thief cutting through a steering wheel with a hack saw to get a "Club" off. Took him about 30 seconds to get it off.

--Nate
 

Lineman

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2002
Location
New Hampshire
TDI
TDI-less... own a RAM 1500 Diesel now
I was trying to find a picture of a steering wheel with the club on it lying on the sidewalk, but couldn't find it....

You never know when your car could get broken into.

My old Nissan Maxima had the key stuck in the ignition for several years, and at the time I had to park on the street in Central Square, Cambridge, MA which isn't the nicest neighborhood. Never had a problem.

I never left anything of value that could be seen, I think that helped a lot.
 

thebigarniedog

Master of the Obvious
Joined
Oct 14, 2007
Location
Fail Command (Central Ohio)
TDI
1998 Jetta tdi
Unfortunately, the Immo systems are yet another attempt to try and make something fool proof. Can't be done and is a waste of everyones time and money.

Case in point: A local had his new corvette stolen from his detached garage. The thief bypassed all the security features of the car by removing the car keys from the pegboard on the garage wall and driving away while the genius owner slept. The guy stealing the car was an idiot drunk who left his own car at the seen of the "crime" after it ran out of gas. Our drunk has no background in car thefts.
 

Diesel_Mikey

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2009
Location
Jersey City, NJ
TDI
2009 Jetta TDI
How secure anything is, be it a car, a house, whatever, is limited mainly by how badly the crook wants to steal it. I use the Club, mainly because it makes me feel better...I know if someone really wanted to steal my car anyway, they'd get around that, as well as the immobilizer system, but the name of the game is to make the next guy's car look like an easier job than yours.
My dad's '89 Golf was stolen once (from a "nice," suburban corporate campus parking lot), and afterwards he installed a switch to kill the fuel pump The switch had to be in the "on" position for the fuel system to work. It was disguised as a fog light switch...of course, the car didn't have fog lights :rolleyes: , so an observant car thief probably could have figured that one out... If you're really worried about it, something like that (but with better camouflage) might be worthwhile.
The general area where you park can be less of a factor than the specific location where you park, too...if it's a relatively busy block where a thief can't judge how much time he has before someone sees him, that works as a deterrent. Just some thoughts, but there's definitely no perfect solution.
 

Diesel_Mikey

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2009
Location
Jersey City, NJ
TDI
2009 Jetta TDI
Diesel_Mikey said:
How secure anything is, be it a car, a house, whatever, is limited mainly by how badly the crook wants to steal it.
I hate it when my house gets stolen...oh well, you knew what I meant ;) .
 

PlaneCrazy

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Jan 3, 2000
Location
Province of Quebec, Canada
TDI
Gone...
The Club. A colleague had one. One morning he woke up to find it sawn off, and sitting in his driveway, where his brand-new Ford Ranger had been parked.

Here's a good one on immobilizers. Back in the late '90s I had just traded-in my '96 BMW 328i. It was the first year of the chip immobilizer system with changing codes. The car was sitting on the dealer's lot (a Honda dealer that also had a thriving luxury used car business thanks to his leasing division). Thieves broke into it via the trunk, and tried to hot-wire it.

They got nowhere, all they succeeded in doing was inflicting about $900 damage to the dash. They eventually fled and left the car there.
 

Joe_Meehan

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Sep 3, 2005
Location
Ohio USA
TDI
NB TDI, 2002.5, Silver
My father had the right idea. What you have to do is to make your property less attractive to the crook than your neighbors. That means your is harder to steal, or more risky or they don't know it exist.

Parking it in a garage, that may need paint, that has no windows should go a long way. OK likely you don't have a garage, but not you have a good reason to get the house with one.
 

NB_TDi

Vendor
Joined
Mar 16, 2008
Location
NB, Canada █♣█
TDI
2014 Jetta SE
Locks keeps friends out. Nothing more. If someone wants your car, not for a joyride. Pop it in neutral, pull it onto a flat bed. Seriously.

Best measure is to NOT keep wallets, money, GPS, Ipods and phones in sight!
 

loaba

Veteran Member
Joined
May 10, 2009
Location
Albuquerque, NM
TDI
12 Jetta Sportwagen
NB_TDi said:
Best measure is to NOT keep wallets, money, GPS, Ipods and phones in sight!
DING!

You can't control random encounters with thieves, but you can control what's visible in your car. Be smart, be safe, then let come what may.
 

david_594

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Feb 28, 2004
Location
Cheshire, CT
TDI
2000 Jetta GLS Silver
As everyone said before there are 2 types of thiefs out there. The amateur and the pro. (Ignoring for now the idiot who would break your window for the change in your ash tray).

The amateur isnt going to be able to get past the immobolizer, so either way your car isnt going anywhere. The Club at best might save you the hassle of a broken window at some point.

The pro will know about the immobolizer, and will either know what it take to bypass it and off with your car. If you had a club your car might have been safer, but the same pro who might want your car will also know someone with a flat bed, and again, off with your car. Unless they are towing your car out of your driveway no one would ever say a word about a truck picking up a car.

But in reality how many cases have there been of TDI's being stolen for anything more than a joy ride? Immobolizer and comprehensive insurance are good enough for me to sleep well at night.
 

CoolAirVw

Vendor
Joined
Nov 9, 2005
Location
Kansas City Missouri
TDI
Jetta
CoolAirVw said:
Immobilizer is effective. The average thief has no chance of driving your car away.
earlburner said:
A tow truck and dolly and your car is gone! Imobilizer or not.
Average thief doesn't have a tow truck, nor a dolly. Average thief is a loser, doper, or punk kid.

I think the thiefs that steal cars with flatbed tow truck, as mentioned by someone above would probably be after corvettes cadillacs or something worth a little more value than our tdi's. Note that a used flatbed costs 17,000 dollars, and they would be risking their 17,000 investment to steal a 6500-12,000 tdi.

Most thiefs wouldn't understand the value that we place on our cars. They would steal an acura or a lexus or an audi maybe, but honestly they would be looking for a porsche or a vette or maybe a classic muscle car or something. (Eleanor):eek:

I have a Porsche 914 and the porsche forums that I frequent have a stolen car section. Or the front page of the site has a "stolen recently section" or you frequently see posts of "stolen in san diego" (insert city of your choise).

Strange that I've never seen a post like that here. Not saying none exist! But they certainly are not common! Therefore the immobilizer is effective.
 
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