Owners of Chevrolet, Ford and GMC full-size pickups have extra reason to cautiously guard their vehicles.
Those were among the most often stolen vehicles during 2021, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau’s annual Hot Wheels vehicle theft report.
Full-size pickups from the three automakers made up 14% of the nearly 1 million passenger vehicles stolen last year.
Overall, thefts were up 8% over 2020. Supply-chain issues and inflation have combined to raise the prices of used vehicles by 35% over the past two years, the NICB reports. That makes stolen cars even more valuable to the thieves who snatch them.
The 10 most commonly stolen vehicles — along with the model year thieves most commonly targeted — in 2021 were:
- Chevrolet pickup (full size): 48,206 total thefts, with the 2004 model being stolen most often
- Ford pickup (full size): 47,999 total thefts, 2006 model
- Honda Civic: 31,673 total thefts, 2000 model
- Honda Accord: 30,274 total thefts, 1997 model
- Toyota Camry: 17,270 total thefts, 2007 model
- GMC pickup (full size): 15,599 total thefts, 2005 model
- Nissan Altima: 14,108 total thefts, 2020 model
- Honda CR-V: 13,308 total thefts, 2000 model
- Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee: 13,210, 2018 model
- Toyota Corolla: 12,927 total thefts, 2020 model
The NICB says that the popularity and availability of full-size pickups and mid-sized sedans make them a target for thieves. For example, the organization notes that for decades, the Ford F-Series pickup has been among the top-selling vehicles in the U.S.
In the past, the NICB also has noted that older cars often appear on the Hot Wheels list because they were built without robust anti-theft technology. So, it’s a mistake to think that driving around an old beater means you don’t have to worry about your wheels being stolen.
In fact, not realizing that thieves target older cars is one of the “8 Things That Make Your Car an Easy Target for Thieves.”
The NICB offers some other tips for keeping your car out of the clutches of thieves, including:
- “Roll up your windows, lock your doors, and take the keys or fob.
- Park in well-lit areas and, when possible, areas staffed by security personnel and further protected by surveillance cameras.
- Remove valuables from your car or keep valuables locked in your trunk or out of sight under a rear deck cover.
- Consider adding an immobilizing or tracking device for your vehicle.”
If your car is stolen despite your best efforts, report the theft right away. Among those who do so in the first 24 hours, stolen vehicles are recovered 34% of the time, according to the NICB.
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