And 7 ways to prevent your car from being stolen
I found this “Hot List” (sorry for the pun) of the top 10 most stolen cars – new and used – interesting. What surprised me is that it isn’t the flashy, expensive cars that get swiped most (which is what I always assumed it to be – and please no snide comments that because I’m from Detroit I should already know this). The list reveals that it’s more likely to be the familiar family car that blends well into a crowded parking lot.
Another interesting point is that top-selling older cars are stolen far more often than brand new cars. The thieves typically dismantle the vehicles and sell the parts on the Internet or to crooked auto parts dealers.
The information comes from the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) in Des Plaines, Ill. Here’s the list of the 10 most stolen cars (from all model years) taken during 2013, with total cars stolen:
- Honda Accord, 53,995
- Honda Civic, 45,001
- Chevrolet Silverado, 27,809
- Ford F-150, 26,494
- Toyota Camry, 14,420
- Dodge/Ram Pickup, 11,347
- Dodge Caravan, 10,911
- Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee, 9,272
- Toyota Corolla, 9,010
- Nissan Altima, 8,892
And here’s the top 10 list of new vehicles (2013 model year) stolen last year, also based on NICB data:
- Nissan Altima, 810
- Ford Fusion, 793
- Ford F-150, 775
- Toyota Corolla, 669
- Chevrolet Impala, 654
- Hyundai Elantra, 541
- Dodge Charger, 536
- Chevrolet Malibu, 529
- Chevrolet Cruze, 499
- Ford Focus, 483
Here are some tips to protect your car from theft
The good news is that FBI says car thefts are on a downward trend. But it’s still wise to consider the following steps to help prevent your car from being stolen, starting with some common sense reminders:
- Don’t leave your vehicle unattended with the keys in the ignition.
- When you exit your vehicle, make sure to remember to close the windows and sunroof when you lock it.
- Keep your car in the garage instead of the driveway or parking lot.
- Consider an anti-theft device, such as a steering wheel lock like the “Club,” or a car alarm.
- Consider installing an ignition kill switch or fuel cutoff device in a hidden location to make it more difficult for a car thief to start the vehicle.
- Consider a GPS tracking device so you can monitor your car’s location via a Smartphone or computer.
- Have the VIN number etched on the windshield and major components to make them more difficult for chop shops to sell as replacement parts.