Analysis by Tracker reveals that Range Rovers and Land Rovers take six of the ten places in the 2020 list of Tracker’s most commonly stolen and recovered vehicles.
The three top spots in the 2020 league table are all Range Rover models – the Sport, the Vogue and the Autobiography.
The Land Rover Discovery, Range Rover Evoque and Land Rover Defender also make the top ten.
These six models alone account for 37% of all stolen cars recovered by Tracker in 2020.
Analysis of how criminals stole cars in 2020 reveals that keyless theft has risen to an all-time high, with 93% of all recovered vehicles having been stolen without the thief having possession of the keys.
This has nudged up from 92% in 2019 but represents a 26% increase in the last 5 years. Thieves use sophisticated equipment to exploit keyless technology by hijacking the car key’s signal, typically from the security of the owner’s home, and remotely fooling the system into unlocking the doors and starting the engine. This is commonly known as a “relay attack”.
Clive Wain, Head of Police Liaison for Tracker, commented, “Range Rover and other Land Rover models have always featured in our top ten most stolen and recovered league table in the last 10 years, as has the BMW X5 which has slipped from 2nd to 4th position in 2020.
However, most premium 4×4 cars are hot targets, with car thieves stealing to order, often shipping them abroad or stripping them for parts in a chop shop to meet the growing demand for spare parts.”
Adding to owner’s security woes, in 2020 new car production ground to a halt in response to COVID-19. This caused significant delays to the supply chain and made Tracker’s top ten most stolen and recovered vehicles all the more desirable.
Pent-up demand for both nearly new cars and manufacturer approved parts increases values and boosts trade for criminals stealing to fill the gap.
Wain concluded, “Keyless car theft has risen dramatically in recent years. It is quick and easy for professional criminals who have the tools and experience.
“Cars are commonly taken from outside of the owners’ house, often discreetly and within minutes, meaning the theft often goes unnoticed for some time.
“We encourage drivers to use traditional visual deterrents such as crook locks and wheel clamps to deter criminals and protect their car, however in the event of a theft, stolen vehicle tracking technology will significantly help police quickly close the net on thieves and return the vehicle to its rightful owner.”
After the Range Rover models, the most popular among thieves was the BMW X5 while Mercedes-Benz C and E-Class models also featured in the top ten taken.