Can a Dealership Track a Stolen Car? Discover the Answer Now!


Car theft has always been a major concern for motorists all over the world. It is not uncommon to hear stories of car owners lamenting the loss of their beloved ride. Automobile dealerships have been an essential part of car buying and selling for ages. They are involved in all aspects of the automobile industry, including vehicle maintenance, financing, insurance, and of course, sales. But one crucial question on everyone’s mind is, can a dealership track a stolen car? In this article, we will explore the possibilities of dealerships tracking a stolen car and the methods they employ to do so.

The Importance of Tracking a Stolen Car

The loss of a car to theft can be a significant expense in terms of time and money. In most cases, the owners of stolen cars never see their car again. That is why tracking a stolen car is essential because it increases the chances of recovering the car. Recovering a stolen car would save the car owner a lot of money and reduce the stress caused by the loss. Therefore, tracking a stolen car is crucial, and dealerships can play a vital role in this pursuit.

Dealership’s Role in Tracking a Stolen Car

When a car is stolen, one of the first places that are contacted is the dealership where the car was purchased. The dealership usually has records of the vehicle’s identification number (VIN) and other pertinent information that could aid in tracking the car. The dealership can provide this information to the police, enabling them to track the whereabouts of the stolen car. Additionally, dealerships have their security measures, such as GPS tracking systems, which they can use to track the stolen car’s location in real-time.


In conclusion, vehicle dealerships can play a significant role in tracking a stolen car. With their detailed records of car purchases and GPS tracking systems, dealerships can provide much-needed information to law enforcement agencies to improve the chances of recovering a stolen car. The importance of tracking a stolen car cannot be overstated, as it helps car owners to recover their vehicles and reduce the financial and emotional stress that comes with the loss of a car.

How Dealerships Can Help Track Stolen Cars

Car theft is a frustrating experience for any car owner. The thought of losing a valuable asset is simply unbearable. To make matters worse, it’s tough to know whether your car can be recovered after theft or if you’ll ever see it again. 

However, if your car happens to be stolen and you are having a hard time tracking it down, there’s a chance that your dealership can help. Dealerships can use their management systems to track stolen cars and assist you in reporting the theft to the appropriate authorities. In this section, we’ll discuss how dealer management systems work and how they can help in the recovery of stolen cars.

Dealer Management Systems (DMS)

A dealer management system (DMS) is a software solution used to manage the many aspects of a car dealership. It is used to manage inventory, sales, service, parts, and accounting. The system collects data on every vehicle, which includes the make, model, and VIN, along with other vital information.

In the event of a theft, dealerships can use their DMS to search for the stolen vehicle by its unique VIN number. If the vehicle is in the inventory or has been serviced at the dealership previously, the DMS will show its location and provide information on the vehicle’s condition. This information can be used to assist the police in locating and recovering the stolen car. 

In addition, DMS can also be used to create comprehensive reports for insurance claims and dealership records. These reports can assist with the investigation of a stolen vehicle, and can also provide critical data to the police and insurance company to improve the chances of recovery.

Limitations of Dealership Tracking

While it is possible for a dealership to track a stolen car through various methods, there are several limitations to this process. It is important to understand these limitations before relying solely on a dealership to recover a stolen vehicle.

Privacy Concerns

One concern with dealership tracking is the potential for invasion of privacy. In order to track a car, various tracking devices and systems may need to be installed in the vehicle. This can include GPS tracking systems or electronic monitoring devices. While these devices may help track a stolen car, they also raise concerns about privacy and potential misuse of personal information.

Additionally, some car owners may feel uncomfortable with the idea of being constantly monitored or tracked. This is particularly true if the tracking is done without their knowledge or consent. In these cases, it is important for dealerships to be transparent about their tracking practices and to obtain consent from car owners before installing any tracking devices.

Costs and Maintenance

Another limitation of dealership tracking is the cost and maintenance required. Tracking devices and systems can be expensive to install and maintain, particularly if they require regular updates or repairs. This can be a major issue for smaller dealerships or for owners of older or less expensive cars that may not warrant the investment in a tracking system.

In addition to the initial costs of installation and maintenance, there may also be ongoing fees associated with dealership tracking services. This can include subscription fees for access to tracking data or additional maintenance costs for more advanced tracking systems.

Pros Cons
Privacy Concerns Allows dealership to track and recover stolen vehicles Raises concerns about privacy and personal information
Costs and Maintenance Provides a valuable service for car owners Can be expensive to install and maintain

Other Ways to Track Stolen Cars

Car Tracking Apps

One of the best ways to track a stolen car is by using a car tracking app. Many car tracking apps are available on the market, which can help you track your vehicle’s location in real-time. With the help of GPS technology, the app can locate your car even if it’s miles away from you. Some of the popular car tracking apps are:

  • LoJack
  • OnStar Vehicle Locate
  • CarLock
  • TrackR Bravo

These apps are not only helpful in tracking stolen cars, but they also provide other features such as remote start, locking and unlocking doors, and sending theft alerts. The only downside is that most of these car tracking apps require a subscription, which can be expensive.

Police and Insurance

Reporting to the police and contacting your insurance company is the first thing you should do when your car is stolen. The police will file a report and start looking for your vehicle. They may notice suspicious vehicles that match your car’s description and can help in tracking it. Also, contacting your insurance company will help you file a claim and get compensation for the loss.

Some insurance companies offer GPS tracking devices that can be installed in your car to help track it in case of theft. The device transmits a signal that can be used to locate the car’s exact location. It’s a helpful feature, but again, it comes with a cost.


Can a dealership track a stolen car?

Yes, a dealership can track a stolen car. Most modern cars are equipped with GPS and other tracking mechanisms, and if activated, these systems can send information about the car’s whereabouts to the dealership or the manufacturer. However, in order to track a stolen car, the dealership must be notified that the car is missing, and a stolen vehicle report must be filed with the police. It’s worth noting that not all cars have GPS or tracking mechanisms, and even if the car has these features, they are not foolproof and can be disabled by tech-savvy criminals.

How does a dealership track a stolen car?

When a car is reported stolen, the dealership can activate the car’s GPS or tracking mechanism to try to locate it. The information about the car’s whereabouts is then relayed to the dealership or the manufacturer, who can work with the police to recover the stolen car. Some cars may also have remote disable features, which allow the dealership to disable the engine and prevent the car from being driven further. However, these features are typically reserved for high-end luxury cars and are not available on most basic car models.

What happens when a stolen car is recovered by a dealership?

When a dealership recovers a stolen car, the police must be notified immediately. The police will take possession of the car and conduct an investigation to determine who stole the car and whether any other crimes were committed in the process. The dealership may also be required to provide information about how the car was recovered and any damage or modifications that were made to the car while it was missing. Once the police have completed their investigation, the car is usually returned to its owner or their insurance company.

Can a dealership prevent a car from being stolen in the first place?

While dealerships cannot guarantee that a car won’t be stolen, they can take steps to make it more difficult for thieves to steal the car. One of the most effective ways to do this is to install an anti-theft device, such as an engine immobilizer or a tracking system. These devices can make it much harder for a thief to steal the car or get away with it if they do manage to steal it. Additionally, dealerships can provide advice and resources to help car owners keep their vehicles safe, such as parking in well-lit areas and not leaving valuables in the car.

What should I do if my car is stolen?

If your car is stolen, the first thing you should do is call the police and file a stolen vehicle report. You should also contact your dealership and notify them that the car has been stolen. If the car is equipped with GPS or tracking mechanisms, you should provide this information to the police and the dealership. You should also contact your insurance company to report the theft and initiate the claims process. Finally, you should keep a record of all the steps you take and any interactions you have with the police, the dealership, and the insurance company, as this will help you in the event that there are any disputes or issues that need to be resolved.