Common sense would dictate that car thieves are only interested in stealing vehicles with luxury or premium badges. However, that no longer seems to be the case, at least according to the latest data from Tracker.
In 2016, almost a third of stolen vehicles recovered by the vehicle tracking provider were valued at under £5,000, with the average value ringing in at just over £16,000 – £3,000 or 13 per cent less than in 2015.
Additionally, less than one per cent of stolen vehicles Tracker recovers are worth between £75,000 and £120,000, while three in four stolen cars recovered were worth less than £20,000.
Tracker believes that the age, mileage and even brand of a vehicle doesn’t seem to matter to vehicle thieves as much anymore, a point that should serve as a stark warning to the average car owner.
More affordable and ubiquitous brands, such as Ford, Vauxhall and VW, were stolen in record numbers during 2016, with the lowest-value car stolen and recovered being a VW Golf worth just £400.
Andy Barrs, head of police liaison at Tracker and a former chief superintendent for South Yorkshire Police, warned: “If people think their car isn’t worth enough for thieves to steal it, think again.
“The message for all motorists is to protect their car from thieves or if you love it, track it.”
With the help of the police, Tracker has recovered over £517 million worth of stolen vehicles to date, and recovers on average £1 million worth of stolen vehicles every month.
Stephen Hasley, brand manager at Petrol News, adds: “It seems that all cars, regardless of their value, are a potential target for car thieves.”