Revealed: the most-wanted ‘shopping list’ for car thieves

Car thieve's shopping list

The most in-demand vehicles for theft in 2019 have been revealed, based on what criminals might be paid when they sell them.

The figures come from vehicle protection provider, AX. Car thefts have risen from 75,308 annually in 2013-2014 to 112,000 in 2017-2018: a rise of 50 percent in five years.

As we’ve previously reported, a large driver of this increase is the proliferation of keyless theft.

Car thieve's shopping list

Premium brands such as Audi, BMW, Land Rover and Mercedes-Benz dominate the ‘shopping lists’ of car thieves.

In fact, the AX list of most-wanted cars is composed exclusively of models from those brands. Remember, these aren’t necessarily the cars that are stolen the most, but those thieves can best profit from.

‘A’ models from Audi, ranging from the A1 to the A5, have a post-theft value of just £1,000. Models from BMW, from the 2 Series through to the 5 Series, can go for between £1,500 and £1,800. The Mercedes C-Class undercuts them slightly, retailing for between £1,000 and £1,500.

Car thieve's shopping list

Large SUVs are the big-ticket items for thieves, though. The BMW X5 has a post-theft value of between £1,800 and £2,000.

Likewise, a Range Rover goes for between £1,500 and £2,000. The performance SVR variant, like anything from Mercedes-AMG, can fetch between £2,000 and £3,000.

Car thieve's shopping list

“We know how the criminals operate but, with the UK theft figures in mind, it’s a sharp reminder of the problem car owners and the industry faces,” said Neil Thomas, director of investigative services at AX.

“The list is quite shocking, despite my 30 years working in the police force. Business and private owners alike are affected by the increase in thefts, so it’s paramount to take precautions to avoid being targeted, or ensure vehicles have robust covert technology so that they can be recovered.”

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