Car buyers are being deceived into thinking they are ordering a luxury car from Gooding, Idaho, at a cheap rate.
BBB says the scam operates like this: a consumer signs a purchase and sales agreement for an automobile from the alleged company and subsequently wires $35,000 plus a $15 wire transfer fee to the company. The consumer is advised he would receive delivery of the automobile on a specific date, but it never arrives.
Calls to the sales representative are not returned, but the car remains listed as available for purchase.
Wartluft Motor is a website listing luxury cars for sale, giving a phone number with a Gooding prefix, address and photos. However, it does not exist. Email to company officials went unanswered.
“This is a typical non-dealer advertising vehicles they do not possess in order to get you to wire them money,” says Dale Dixon, CEO of Better Business Bureau serving the Snake River Region. “The website is hijacked.”
Dixon says the website is registered to a computer last located in the Czech Republic, but the information on the website tries to legitimize it with a fictitious dealership, complete with phone number and photographs of employees, cars and service area.
Gooding city officials say Wartluft Motor Sports operated at 149 W. Main until October 2011. The lot is currently vacant.
“The pictures posted on the website clearly are inconsistent to reality,” he says.
Wartluft Motor Sports was a small engine repair shop and outdoor sports vehicles sales. Attempts were made to contact the previous owner who reportedly has taken employment in another state.
Google map shows the location on Main Street is a vacant lot. A phone number on the website (208) 944-4457 is disconnected.
Other domain names listed to this IPO address include: beebackmotor.com (fraud alert) in Wyoming and a-zmotors.com, lists an address of 2819 Bridge St., Philadelphia, PA as building site (Google map places the location on a warehouse, no identifying).
Last fall, BBB notified consumers of Pete’s Auto, which operated out of a vacant lot in Twin Falls.
- Contact authorities in the state where the company is located to verify they are licensed to operate.
- Always check the dealer’s BBB Business Review at bbb.org.
- Beware if the dealer only accepts payment by money-wire transfer.
- If purchasing a vehicle out-of-state, have a person you trust inspect the vehicle in person before paying.
- Beware of prices that seem too good to be true.