Report Reveals the Most Stolen Vehicles
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has recently published its annual report detailing the most stolen vehicles, and it’s a familiar story with two Dodge Charger variants reigning supreme on the list. Ever wondered about the likelihood of your car getting stolen? A fresh study from the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) provides insights into which vehicles are prime targets for thieves, and some of the results might catch you off guard.
Topping the charts, two powerful Dodge muscle cars equipped with substantial engines have captured the attention of car thieves.
Claiming the unfortunate title of the most stolen vehicle is the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat. According to HLDI data, theft claims for the Hellcat were a staggering 60 times more frequent than the average for all 2020-22 models, considering their numbers on the road. Theft claims for the Charger HEMI were also alarmingly more than 20 times higher than the average.
Here’s another surprising revelation: Although thefts of Kia and Hyundai vehicles in Chicago saw an astounding increase of over 1,500% compared to the previous year, none of Hyundai’s models made it to HLDI’s “most stolen” list, while four Kia models were named.
Theft claims for the Kia Sportage were five times more common than the average for all 2020-22 models, taking into account their numbers on the road. Other Kia models featured on the list include the Kia Forte, Rio, and Sportage 4-wheel-drive.
Thieves seem to prefer older models of these vehicles, as many Hyundai and Kia models lack the standard electronic immobilizers that other brands possess, making them more susceptible to theft and vandalism.
PDF available here.
On the Flip Side
The study reveals that the vehicles least likely to be stolen are a variety of Tesla models. Experts suggest that if you own a vehicle that ranks high on the theft list, you’re probably paying more for comprehensive coverage.
It appears that Americans have a fondness for big, V8-powered, rear-wheel-drive cars, even those who are trying to avoid high costs.
The Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat and Dodge Charger Hemi have once again claimed the dubious honor of being the most stolen vehicles in the United States, as per the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI).
Different Methods, Similar Results
Two organizations that report on car theft in the United States employ different methods to arrive at their findings. The National Insurance Crime Bureau provides raw numbers, which often highlight the most commonly stolen cars due to the high demand for their parts.
In contrast, HLDI assesses the relative risk of theft for each car. Funded by a consortium of insurance companies and part of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, HLDI compiles its data from claims reports.
The Dodge Charger and its 2-door Challenger sibling have consistently ranked among the top five most frequently stolen cars every year since 2011, according to HLDI.
Electric Vehicles: A Thief’s Nightmare
What kind of cars do thieves steer clear of? Electric vehicles. HLDI reports that “Six of the 20 models with the fewest claims for whole vehicle theft are electric vehicles.” This is likely because electric vehicles are often parked overnight in well-lit and relatively secure areas for charging.
The report draws data from the Highway Loss Data Institute, the data analysis arm of IIHS, and ranks vehicles from the past three model years based on claims per insured vehicle year. This approach standardizes statistics across vehicles with varying sales volumes (more common vehicles have a higher chance of being stolen).
At the top of the 2023 list are the familiar names of the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat and the Dodge Charger Hemi. The Dodge Challenger takes the fourth spot, following the Infiniti Q50. It’s worth noting that the Infiniti Q50 has been a recurring feature on the most stolen vehicle list since the 2014 model year, for reasons that remain somewhat mysterious.
Perhaps less mysterious but more alarming is the frequency of Charger thefts. According to HLDI data, for every 1,000 insured vehicle years, a staggering 25 Charger SRT Hellcats were stolen. This is over 60 times the average for all vehicles from model-years 2020-22. Even Chargers with naturally aspirated Hemi engines are 20 times more likely to be stolen compared to the average car from the same year. To put it into context, the most stolen vehicle from model-years 2017-19, the Infiniti Q60, was stolen just twice per 1,000 insured vehicle years.
Most Stolen Vehicles
- Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
- Dodge Charger Hemi
- Infiniti Q50
- Dodge Challenger
- Land Rover Range Rover
- Kia Sportage
- Land Rover Range Rover Sport
- Kia Sportage (all-wheel drive)
- Honda CR-V (AWD)
- BMW X6 (AWD)
- Kia Rio
- Kia Forte
- Ford Super Duty F-350 (SuperCrew 4WD)
- BMW X7 (AWD)
- Ford Super Duty F-250 (SuperCrew 4WD)
- Honda Accord
- Ram 3500 (crew-cab long-wheelbase 4WD)
- Infiniti Q50 (AWD)
- Nissan Maxima
- Honda CR-V
Hyundais and Kias have surged on the list due to a viral TikTok challenge that demonstrated how to quickly hot-wire the cars, many of which lack engine immobilizers to prevent the vehicle from starting without a key. The automaker has agreed to compensate owners with $200 million for losses not covered by insurance, such as increased insurance premiums for cars that weren’t stolen. The brands now offer a free solution for all affected cars at their local dealerships and install immobilizers on all new vehicles.
Least Stolen Vehicles
If this information has you feeling anxious about your vehicle’s safety, here’s a list of vehicles from model years 2020-22 that are least likely to be stolen:
- Tesla Model 3 (AWD)
- Tesla Model Y (AWD)
- Volvo XC90 (AWD)
- GMC Acadia (AWD)
- Tesla Model X (AWD)
- Volvo XC40 (AWD)
- Tesla Model 3
- Chevrolet Trailblazer (AWD)
- Lexus UX 250h (AWD)
- Volvo XC60 (AWD)
- Buick Envision (AWD)
- Cadillac XT5 (AWD)
- Chevrolet Traverse (AWD)
- Land Rover Defender (4WD)
- Buick Encore GX (AWD)
- Nissan Leaf
- Mercedes-Benz GLE
- Subaru Ascent (AWD)
- Tesla Model S (AWD)
- Volvo XC60
For more interesting news about the automotive sector, check out this article: Debunking Electric Vehicle Myths