DTNA seeks to combat theft of CPC modules

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Updated May 24, 2022
Freightliner CPC4 module

Laden with trace amounts of platinum, palladium and rhodium, catalytic converters have long been targeted by thieves seeking to extract the rare metals that command a few thousand dollars per ounce.

In an effort to combat theft, OEMs like Isuzu offer factory-installed CAT cages, but catalytic converters aren't the only component black market shoppers are lifting from parked trucks. 

Common powertrain controller (CPC4) modules were reported stolen from 24 trucks waiting to be sold at an auction yard in Pennsylvania in April, and a large number of other thefts have occurred at dealerships and customer terminals. Vehicles cannot operate without a CPC, which controls various engine and powertrain functions, and these modules each routinely fetch thousands of dollars on the open market.  

Daimler Truck North America (DTNA) Monday announced the launch of an initiative against the theft of CPC4 modules from its vehicles. Reported thefts of CPC4 modules from parked trucks have been on the rise, with thieves seeking to have them reprogrammed and installed on other trucks.

In response, DTNA has instituted the following anti-theft measures:   

  • Asking all customers and dealers to report stolen CPCs to both local law enforcement and DTNA at 1-800-FTL-HELP. 
  • Recommending all dealerships, customers and repair facilities cross reference vehicle identification numbers from CPCs brought in for installation against the company’s database of CPCs to ensure the CPC hasn’t been stolen or illicitly sold. 
  • Providing tracking capability through DTNA Service Systems to detect any stolen CPC attempting to be installed on a different VIN.
  • Asking any dealership or repair facility with a CPC confirmed stolen to report it to both their local police agency and DTNA.
  • Recommending all fleets and customers password-protect their CPCs.

DTNA is further collaborating with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to assist in the investigation and prosecution of CPC theft. The company will additionally evaluate and pursue as necessary civil actions for software infringement against those involved in CPC theft and mismanagement.

“The theft of CPC modules is a crime that threatens the livelihood of customers and disrupts our dealers’ operations,” said Paul Romanaggi, DTNA's chief customer experience officer. “Daimler Truck North America is committed to doing everything in its power to protect our customers and dealers from this crime, and will support prosecution of anyone found in participating in these thefts.”