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NZ's most stolen cars


Older imports are topping the list of the top 10 cars most frequently stolen in New Zealand

AA Insurance has revealed the 10 cars stolen most frequently in New Zealand, based on theft claims received over the last four years.

Car models where all or most of the vehicles are imported second-hand make up the majority of those on the list and over 80% of the top stolen cars are more than 10 years old.

  • Nissan Silvia
  • Honda Torneo
  • Nissan Skyline
  • Subaru Impreza
  • Subaru Forester
  • Subaru Legacy
  • Nissan Presea
  • Honda Prelude
  • Honda Integra
  • Nissan Cefiro

The Nissan Silvia remains the most frequently stolen car for the third consecutive year, and the Nissan Skyline and various models of Subaru remain popular for thieves. New entries this year include the Honda Torneo, the Nissan Presea and the Nissan Cefiro.

To calculate theft incidence AA Insurance measures the number of claims made for each model of car as a percentage of the total number of policies it holds for that model.

“Imported or older vehicles have less security than New Zealand-new vehicles,” says Suzanne Wolton, Head of Corporate Affairs, AA Insurance. “Because they lack the latest security features, such as electronic locking, alarms and immobilisers, second-hand imported vehicles make it easier for thieves to pick and choose their targets.”

In the 2010 AA Insurance Drivers Index, 71% of those surveyed indicated that they wouldn’t purchase a car that they considered to be a high theft risk. However, it seems people aren’t aware of the risks associated with older imported vehicles, as up to 60% of all vehicles on New Zealand roads are imports and the average vehicle age is 12 years old.

“If you drive an older or imported car there are a number of steps you can take to reduce the risk of theft,” says Wolton. “You can make it less attractive by installing an alarm or immobiliser, and make sure it can be clearly seen. Thieves don’t like the look of a flashing light or even an alarm sticker, and will usually move on to an easier target.”

The AA Insurance Drivers Index also shows that New Zealanders have a false sense of security and are less careful about their cars when they are at home. One quarter of respondents who regularly leave their car unlocked say they don’t lock their car when it is parked at home and 23% don’t lock it when it is in their garage.

“One of the simplest things you can do is lock your car, even when it’s at home or parked in the garage and if you’re in a public place, park where your car, and a thief, will be most visible – under a streetlight or near a security camera,” says Wolton.

Of the cars reported stolen to AA Insurance, only 30 percent were ever recovered.

(Source: AA Insurance claims data 2007-2010)

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