By Matt Schmitz on August 21, 2014
As is often the case in these "most-stolen" lists, the vehicles that are most popular with those who buy cars are commensurately popular with those who steal them. Of the top 10 popularly pilfered vehicles on the Des Plaines, Ill.,-based National Insurance Crime Bureau's annual "Hot Wheels" list, seven are also mainstays among the nation's top 10 best-selling cars each month.
Topping the list is the consistently beloved Honda Accord, with nearly 54,000 thefts in the 2013 counting period, followed by the Honda Civic (45,000) and full-size Chevrolet pickup trucks (28,000). Moreover, while No. 8 combines the Jeep Cherokee and Grand Cherokee into one listing, it should be noted that these are two entirely separate vehicles, one a crossover and the other a full-size SUV.
Released this week, the "Hot Wheels" report examines vehicle theft data submitted by law enforcement agencies across the nation to the National Crime Information Center and determines the vehicle make, model and model year most reported stolen. Like crime overall, vehicle theft has steadily declined in the past couple of decades or so since 1991's 1.7 million, and is on its way to a half-century low, the NICB reported.
"After a slight increase in 2012, the FBI predicts a reduction in national vehicle thefts of 3.2 percent when final 2013 statistics are released later this year," the bureau said in a news release. "If the FBI's preliminary 2013 vehicle theft estimate holds, thefts will be under 700,000 — a number not seen since 1967 and a reduction in vehicle thefts of over 50 percent since 1991."
Still, that doesn't mean drivers should start leaving the keys in the ignition when they park. Those 700,000 stolen vehicles still amount to one stolen every 45 seconds and $4 billion worth of monetary losses each year, according to the NICB.
Want to know if you're driving the hottest of "Hot Wheels"? Here's the top 10, followed by the estimated number stolen in 2013:
1. Honda Accord (53,995)
2. Honda Civic (45,001)
3. Chevrolet pickup, full size (27,809)
4. Ford pickup, full size (26,494)
5. Toyota Camry (14,420)
6. Dodge pickup, full size (11,347)
7. Dodge Caravan (10,911)
8. Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee (9,272)
9. Toyota Corolla (9,010)
10. Nissan Altima (8,892)
In addition, here are the top 10 model-year 2013 vehicles stolen in calendar-year 2013:
1. Nissan Altima (810)
2. Ford Fusion (793)
3. Ford pickup, full-size (775)
4. Toyota Corolla (669)
5. Chevrolet Impala (654)
6. Hyundai Elantra (541)
7. Dodge Charger (536)
8. Chevrolet Malibu (529)
9. Chevrolet Cruze (499)
10. Ford Focus (483)
Cars.com photo by Evan Sears
News Editor Matt Schmitz is a veteran Chicago journalist indulging his curiosity for all things auto while helping to inform car shoppers. Email Matt