MARYVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A controversial East Tennessee auto repair shop is closed after the state Department of Revenue seized its assets and sold them to pay outstanding taxes.
Eurohaus Motorsports in Maryville was shut down after the owner failed to pay state taxes. In a statement, the Department of Revenue said it made every attempt to resolve outstanding tax liabilities with Eurohaus Motorsports and business owner Robert Berry. The Department of Finance told WATE that before the auction, the state “sent letters to Berry, emails and phone calls to set up a payment plan.” but that failed. So, they seized the property left in the shop and auctioned it off for payment toward taxes.
Several of those who showed up for the auction were Berry’s former customers searching for missing parts to their cars.
Tim Diggs was at the auction hoping to find critical parts to his car. Seventeen months ago, Diggs dropped off his 2005 Porsche for Berry to repair. It was never fixed. He got the car back but not the parts.
The state stays Berry placed hundreds of parts in this storage bin next to his garage. Diggs visited the bin a week ago.
“And I had a mechanic with me. We looked but couldn’t identify anything that appeared to be mine. Even if you find parts that you think are yours you can’t prove that they are yours, they’re not numbered or anything,’ said Diggs.
Most of the people at the auction were mechanics and shop owners looking for a deal. But Gishelle Gish like Diggs hoped to find parts to her car that are missing. It’s a 1973 Porsche 911 S.
“I have a number of parts here that Robert has had. Transmission, 911 heads, and motor and stuff that he has had of mine,” said Gish. “Some of the work has been done, I just don’t have it back yet, the transmission is still out of it. Well, it’s pretty, pretty distressing because the car I had is very valuable.”
In February 2022, we reported how David found his exotic 2016 Porsche in pieces after paying Berry $13,000 to fix the engine in October 2020. A month after our interview, David got his Porsche and took it to a second shop to have it repaired.
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At the state auction, the Eurohaus Motorsports property was sold within hours. Diggs left disappointed. Even though Berry returned his car, without the transmission, that couldn’t be identified, the valuable vehicle is just a shell.
“I’ve paid him just under $15,000 supposedly for parts so far. Actually, the car is basically worthless without the powertrain in it. So, I’m out $50,000. Your choices (for repairs) on cars like this are pretty limited in this area. Do some research before you do it,” said Diggs.
The state said ‘every effort” was made to “contact the owners of car parts” left at Eurohaus Motorsports. However, unidentified motor parts were left at the shop. Diggs and Gish said it was nearly impossible to know which parts belonged to their cars.
Berry cited several reasons for why he got behind when questioned by WATE earlier this year: staffing problems, being forced to move his shop to Maryville after losing his lease in Lenoir City and other issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic.