While ICBC and the RCMP have instigated plenty of campaigns to help reduce the number of car thefts that occur across the country, if there are easy marks out there, cars will still continue to be stolen.
It may surprise you to learn that the top 10 most stolen vehicles in Canada and in BC aren’t the brand-new, flashy, speedy, high-end sports cars on the roads—they are the decade-old, practical Ford pickup trucks.
As per the Insurance Bureau of Canada’s annual list, here are the most frequently stolen vehicles in 2015:
The Top 10 Most Stolen Vehicles in Canada* in 2015:
- 2005 Ford F-350 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2006 Ford F-350 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2007 Ford F-350 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2006 Cadillac Escalade 4DR 4WD SUV
- 2003 Ford F-350 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2006 Ford F-250 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2001 Ford F-350 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2004 Ford F-250 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2007 Ford F-250 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2001 Ford F-250 SD 4WD pickup truck
* based on actual insurance claims data collected from nearly all automobile insurance companies in Canada.
The Top 10 Most Stolen Vehicles in British Columbia* in 2015:
- 2004 Ford F250 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2000 Honda Civic two-door coupe
- 2006 Ford F250 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2006 Ford F350 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2005 Ford F350 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2007 Ford F250 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2005 Ford F250 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2001 Ford F350 SD 4WD pickup truck
- 2010 Buick Enclave / Saturn Outlook four-door 2WD SUV
- 2007 Ford F350 SD 4WD pickup truck
* based on actual insurance claims data for the province.
What Makes a Vehicle Easy to Steal?
As you can see, both lists are dominated by the Ford F-series, which is one of the top-selling vehicles across Canada. Based on numbers alone, the more of one type of car there is on the road, the likelier it is to dominate lists like this.
Simply put, there is a huge demand for Ford pickups in British Columbia and across the country. Knowing this, thieves know they are easy to sell on the black market. They are confident there are buyers for these stolen vehicles, both locally and abroad, whether the purchaser is aware or not of the origins of the vehicle.
“None of the top 10 stolen vehicles are equipped with an electronic manufacturer immobilizer as a theft deterrent system, so they are easier to steal,” said Rick Dubin, vice-president of investigative services for IBC, in a statement. “We also see from this list that criminals continue to have a huge demand for AWD/4WD late model high-end vehicles.”
In response to the similar-looking list of the Top Stolen Vehicles in Canada – 2014, in which older pickup trucks also dominated, Dubin said he believed that the majority of stolen F-series vehicles were most likely given a false vehicle identification number (VIN) and sold to unsuspecting consumers, and that luxury vehicles are often stolen in Canada and shipped overseas.
With this in mind, the general public should be made aware of how large a problem car theft can grow to be—it’s not just reserved for local joy rides. The IBC estimates auto theft costs Canadians about $1 billion per year, half of which involves insurance companies paying to fix or replace cars, with the rest going towards police, health care, and court costs.
What Does It Mean For Drivers?
Car theft concerns all drivers on the road, regardless of what car you’re driving. This is because car theft impacts insurance premiums. ICBC calculates its insurance premiums using six criteria:
- Use of the vehicle
- Where the owner lives
- The driver’s claims history
- The type of protection the driver wants
- The type of deductibles they are seeking
- The type of the vehicle
Generally speaking, if you drive a car somewhere in the top 10 lists above, it’s likely you’ll end up paying a bit more in insurance costs per year. You can mitigate this somewhat by installing an anti-theft device and by going through private auto insurance providers where possible. SeaFirst can help you shop around for the best auto insurance options available to you.
Tips for Preventing Car Theft
While these lists only highlight the most commonly stolen vehicles across Canada and in British Columbia, every vehicle out there is a temptation for thieves if it is considered an easy target. Don’t allow yourself to become an easy target! There are many ways you can help protect your vehicle from getting stolen.
Here are a few suggestions:
- Install an after-market anti-theft device within your vehicle.
- Always park in well-lit areas whenever possible.
- Never leave your car running unattended. Thieves are attracted to vehicles that come ready to go with a set of keys included.
- Never leave your keys with your vehicle. It’s tough to outsmart a thief who knows where you might be stashing stuff.
- Park as close as possible to your home. Even though cars are stolen out from under people’s noses, parking on the street is still riskier than parking in your driveway.
- Make your vehicle tougher to tow (Yes, savvy car thieves have been known to use tow trucks) by using your emergency brake when parked, and angle the wheels towards ? while you’re at it.
In a perfect world, no one would ever have to worry about their cars and trucks getting stolen. But the world is far from perfect, and while car theft statistics are slowly shrinking, automobile theft is still an ongoing problem across Canada.
Most of the time when people address their car insurance needs, their biggest concern is making sure they are covered in the event of an accident. Car theft is usually an afterthought, but it shouldn’t be! Take a moment to go over your vehicle’s insurance coverage the next time you are up for renewal, especially if your vehicle is similar to or matches any of the items on the lists above.
For more information on what is covered in your existing insurance plan, come see us at SeaFirst Insurance Brokers. With offices throughout the Greater Victoria and Gulf Island areas, our staff can help you choose the best insurance for your motor vehicle with premiums that fit your budget. We’d be happy to discuss your coverage with you!
Do you have your own clever ways of protecting your car from thieves? Contact us with your tips!