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February 11, 2023

Commodore VE ‘steal’ the one

Neil Dowling

Holden’s sedan ranks as the most stolen car while stolen utes command the greatest value

FORD or Toyota dealers will be interested to learn that demand for their utes is not only high amongst car buyers, Ford and Toyota utes are the favourite targets of car thieves.
A national study found that Australia’s most expensive stolen vehicles were Rangers and the HiLux.

The study, by insurer Budget Direct, said the Holden Commodore VE was the highest model stolen by numbers in all but two capital cities, while the HiLux and Ranger represented the highest individual vehicle by value.

By value, $100 million worth of cars were stolen in 2021.

The study used data collected in the 2021 calendar year that showed that there were more than 20 million registered vehicles on Australian roads and that between 2020 and 2021 the national fleet increased by 1.7 per cent.

In 2021 there were more than 190,000 motor vehicle thefts and thefts from motor vehicles across Australia.

Of these, there were a total of 55,427 vehicle thefts. Brisbane and the Gold Coast recorded the highest incidence of theft. The report said that this could be attributed to Brisbane and the Gold Coast’s local government areas being much bigger than those in other cities such as Sydney.

Queensland reported the highest number of vehicle thefts during 2021 with 15,805 reported in 2021, equivalent to 3.7 thefts per 1000 vehicles.

But the Northern Territory beats that rate, with the highest theft rate of cars per 1000 vehicles at 10.1 while Adelaide tops the list at 13.8 vehicles per 1000 cars.

The Australian Capital Territory had the lowest total number of motor thefts during 2021 (1500 thefts) but when taken on a ‘by 1000 vehicle’ basis, the ACT ranked second around the country with 4.5 thefts per 1000 registered vehicles.

NSW had the lowest figure for average theft rate per 1000 vehicles with 1.8, followed by Tasmania with 2.1 and South Australia with 2.3.

The report said it used the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council (NMVTRC) data to find the top motor vehicle models that were stolen nationally in 2021.

It showed that the Holden Commodore VE (model year 2006-2013) had been stolen 898 times (Queensland showing the highest theft rate of this car at 230 thefts), with these thefts worth a total of $6,988,448.

In terms of value, there were $5.28 million worth of Ford Rangers (MY11 and later) stolen in Queensland and $4.14 million worth of utes stolen in NSW.

On the other end of the scale, Tasmanian thieves went for the Nissan Pulsar as their most preferred stolen ride with 32 thefts of the Pulsar N15 MY1995-2000 model in 2021.

The Budget Direct study also looked at the best/worst times of day for car theft. As an example, in WA the incidences of car theft are highest at 8pm-11:59pm on Fridays (236 thefts) but lowest on Wednesdays and Sundays at 4am-7:59am (69 reported in 2021).

The study said steps to make the car more difficult to steal include increasing security inside and outside the vehicle.

It said that a car that is heavily protected with security cameras inside and out, motion sensors, tyre locks and anti-theft alarms may make thieves reconsider the vehicle as a target.

Designed by Bob Lycoudis
NPM. VPM. Police Prosecutor. Sergeant Victoria Police (Retired) Inventor, Coplock Designer, Car Theft Researcher
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