Bureau of Automotive Repair Undercover Vehicles: The Walking Dead Version

Undercover vehicles seem to exist in a sort of “limbo.” Unowned by an individual consumer and live the life of a normal car. Bureau of Automotive Repair Undercover VehiclsThese autos get modified by the Bureau of Automotive Repair and sent out to ensnare SMOG testing shops. Hence the moniker, Trap Cars . More and more of them seem to be popping up throughout California like the plague. Bureau of Automotive Repair undercover vehicles are doing the job they were intended for; ensnaring SMOG shops with costly fines and court battles. So it makes sense that these “half-life” cars are multiplying like the Walking Dead.
If you’re a fan of the series or the books, you’re familiar with how Zombies work. Once human, they wander aimlessly until an unsuspecting human comes across their path. Then its lunchtime! Zombies are slow and easy to identify, but if you’re not aware, they can sneak up and take a bite out of you.


Like The Walking Dead, these autos once had a normal life and were owned by a regular consumer. Then the Bureau of Automotive Repair attained them and modified them to become undercover vehicles. Unlike a zombie, these cars appear normal on the outside, but under the hood, there are signs of deception and a tech needs to pay attention. If the trap car passes inspection, a STAR certificate can be snatched away in court.
Luckily, undercover cars can only lay in wait until an unknowing SMOG tech gives them a “pass.” An alert smog tech has the time to consider how to deal with this threat. So let’s take a look at a few simple things under the hood that can clue techs in on the fact that they may be servicing a Bureau of Automotive Repair undercover vehicle;

VIN has No testing history
Missing C.A.R.B. labels
Taped pieces
Timing is off
Loose spark plugs
Heater hose used for PVC
Damaged, missing or disconnected parts
Modified components

This is just a sampling of monstrosities lurking under the hood of a BAR car. If you’ve received an accusation letter due to a Bureau of Automotive repair undercover vehicle, it’s time to take action. Our legal team has seen some pretty horrible accusations lunged at hard-working smog technicians in court. Contact us and fight back before your STAR certification loses its life.


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