Car theft is among the top crimes in the United States as well as in other countries around the world. Vehicles that are being targeted by thieves vary in model and type. For instance, a vehicle can be popular in one state, while least stolen in another. Meanwhile, it appears that brand loyalty is not what matters to car thieves. It’s that moment when no one’s watching and off they go with the hapless vehicle.
Here are 10 of the most popular cars/pick-ups that thieves love to drive away with.
The 10th most-stolen car in the United States is the 1994 Nissan Sentra. Car thieves in the states of Oregon, California, Nevada, and Arizona love this model. In Virginia and Maryland, Nissan models like the Maxima or Altima, to name a few, are auto thieves’ top choice. This classic sedan came with a fuel-injected 16-valve, 1.6 liter 4-cylinder engine that delivers an output of 110 horsepower. It is a pretty compact car which may be a reason why thieves are able to get away so quickly.
The 2002 Ford Explorer is among the top choices of car thieves in states like Maine, Delaware, Missouri, and Alabama. The Explorer is also the sixth most stolen vehicle in the state of Virginia’s Top 10 list. The 5-door 2002 model was completely redesigned, losing its similarity with the Ford Ranger and instead had striking resemblance with the Ford Expedition, which is why it is among the favorites of car thieves. It had bigger backlights, round wheel sockets, and a generally much rounder appearance.
Next to the Explorer, the full-size 2004 Dodge is in the eighth spot in the list of most stolen cars in the United States. Car thieves do not seem to care about what type of vehicle they are targeting; both foreign and locally-made vehicles are among their selection. This model was manufactured by Chrysler until the year 2010 when it was bought by the Ram Truck brand. Ram trucks have been labeled as “Truck of the Year” at least four times by the Motor Trend Magazine and this makes it a top favorite among car thieves.
At seventh spot is the full-size 1999 Chevrolet Silverado pick-up truck. Based on a report by the National Insurance Crime Bureau, auto thieves appear to be most attracted to pick-up trucks than any other car type or model. There are a variety of models under the Silverado brand, which include the SS, half-ton, and hybrid models. These light-duty trucks are easy to maneuver.
The 1994 Acura Integra was one of the most stolen vehicles in the state of California in 2011. The NCIB reports that there has been a steady decline in overall annual car thefts in the U.S. but unfortunately, the 1994 Acura Integra is among the models that still rank high in the list. Just like the 1994 Nissan Sentra, its compact design is one of the top reasons why thieves find it easy to steal and get away with the car.
The 2000 Dodge Caravan is a third generation minivan that was manufactured in short and long wheelbase models. It’s also much more flexible as buyers had the option of choosing between a three door or four door configuration. All base models come with a 2.4 liter 4-cylinder engine except in some northeastern states because it did not pass certain emission tests. The model received several notable distinction and awards from top magazines such as the ‘Motor Trend’ and ‘Car and Driver’. The 2000 Dodge Caravan topped the list of Maryland’s most stolen vehicles, and grabbed the fifth spot in Virginia in 2012. So, those living near Beltway in Detroit, take note.
The Camry lineup of Japanese auto giant Toyota tops the wish-list of car thieves in over half the United States. In nine states, the 1991 Camry was included in the 10 most-stolen list. In addition, the 1991 model was the top choice among thieves in the state of Oregon. The 1991 Toyota Camry was a mid-size compact automobile and featured a 2.2 liter four cylinder engine that produced a power output equivalent to 97 kilowatts or 130 horsepower. Apart from its proven reliability, the Toyota brand is also known to provide the most inexpensive spare parts, which may be a reason why this is a top pick among car thieves.
Although car thieves in the district don’t really fancy the full-size 2006 Ford pick-up, this model is the fourth most popular among thieves in Maryland. On top of the 2006 version, thieves in Virginia also prefer the 2005 model. Ford pick-ups were known to be among the best-selling trucks in the United States for almost three decades so it’s no wonder why thieves would want to get their hands on this vehicle.
The second most popular on the thieves’ list of must-have cars are the 1998 and 2000 Honda Civic. These models are two of the hottest across the U.S., thanks to its advanced independent suspension and superb power to weight ratio. It came in coupe, hatchback, and sedan versions, all of which are lightweight and very easy to maneuver. It also came with superior engines that deliver sufficient power in relatively stable terrains, making it a great catch for car thieves.
Topping the list of the ten most-desired cars by thieves is the unassuming 1998 Honda Accord. It is the number one stolen car in Virginia, though thieves in Maryland and the District like the 1996 model better. The four door sedan variant is the best-selling model in the United States but it also came in wagons, hatchbacks, coupes, crossover versions, all of which raked in a good amount of sales. The Accord has been included in Car and Driver’s ten best cars for over 26 times, making it a popular choice of both buyers and thieves alike.