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What Cars Get Stolen The Most In The UK

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  • Posted date:
  • 01-01-2022
What Cars Get Stolen The Most In The UK

Find out what cars get stolen the most in the UK? This article lists the cars that are most often targeted by thieves.

The Cars That Are Stolen Most Often In The UK?

The days of jimmying your way into a strangers car with a bent coat hanger may be behind us. However, figures from the Driving and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) over recent years show that car thefts are still a current issue with motorists, according to DVLA data. In 2020, 74,769 cars were stolen in the UK, which works out as one every seven minutes.

Additionally, the Office For National Statistics (ONS) revealed that up to 72% of the vehicles stolen were never found or returned.

It will be no surprise that the list of the most stolen vehicles features some of the most premium models and best sellers in the UK. Here is a list of the 10 most stolen cars in the UK:

What cars get stolen the most UK? bmw-5-series

BMW 5 Series

The BMW 5 Series is one of the best luxury cars available on the market, with its unsurpassed comfort, elegance and quick handling.

It also, surprisingly, comes with relatively low running costs compared to other luxury cars of the same ilk.

Therefore it is easy to see why this is the first of the two BMWs that have made it onto this list.

Ford Focus

Like the Astra, the Ford Focus is one of the best-selling vehicle's of all time in the UK, coming in at fourth-best in 2020. The Focus is a reliable drive, adding to its popularity with thieves.

BMW 3 Series

Like the other BMW on this list, the 3 Series is a regular at the highest of heights on most car lists, making it another attractive prospect for thieves.

Land Rover Discovery

The Land Rover Discovery is another luxury staple on this list, with a range of excellent design and manufacturing innovations.

Perhaps it is because of this, and the manufacturer's reputation, that this car is another highly-prized target for car thieves.

However, the engine immobiliser and tracking system help keep this vehicle in the hands of its true car owners.

What cars get stolen the most UK? - land rover discovery

Range Rover Sport

This is the second of the Range Rovers on the list and is the flagship model of the entire brand and one of the most popular luxury SUVs.

The Range Rover is very popular with thieves, who often steal these models to ship them overseas quickly, making it the second-most stolen car on our list.

Volkswagen Golf

The Volkswagen Gold hit the spot above the Ford Focus in the best-selling cars of 2020.

Again, its popularity, availability on the streets and reliability of the engine make it another well sought-after vehicle for light-fingered motorists.

What cars get stolen the most UK? - mercedes benz e class

Mercedes Benz E-Class

You may be used to seeing the Mercedes E-Class rank highly on a number of lists.

Again, this is just another reason why it is so highly sought after by car thieves.

There are many positives to this vehicle, making it a big target for those who want to skip the haggling of the forecourt for a light-fingered luxury experience.

Nissan Qashqai  

The popularity of the Nissan Qashqai makes it easy to imagine why this vehicle makes it onto the list.

This car was still a best-seller well into the final year of production, with the newest model only recently being released.

Vauxhaull Astra

There will find thousands of Vauxhall Astras on the streets of the UK.

While it may have dropped from its former popularity in recent years, the nippy hatchback is still an incredibly prevalent and oft-stolen car.

Ford Fiesta

It is possibly one of the most popular cars in the UK, with millions on the roads up and down the country, so it makes sense to have the Ford Fiesta at the top of the most stolen cars list.

It is an economical vehicle that handles excellently.

Clearly, Ford Fiestas have a soft spot in the eyes of thieves and are the most stolen car in the UK.

What cars get stolen the most UK? ford fiesta

What Is Keyless Entry Theft?

Keyless entry theft is almost as it sounds - having your car stolen without using your vehicle keys. Over 90% of vehicle thefts have taken place this way in recent years.

The most common explanation is that thieves are hacking car keys with entry functions to tune them to different vehicles, meaning they can gain entry and start the car without inserting a key anywhere. Even if your key fob is in your house.

So long as your car is close enough, thieves can hack the constant relay between the fob and the car to gain access to the vehicle and drive away in it.

How Are Car Makers Preventing Keyless Theft?

As mentioned previously, keyless car thefts are now one of the most popular ways that car thieves are making off with our vehicles, with a 265% increase between 2016 - 2019 of this type of theft in London alone. Other major cities, such as Nottingham, Manchester and Birmingham, have all seen increases of up to 100%.

However, while these figures may be alarming, independent research companies state that these increases are still below the boom of car thefts over 30 years ago.

In the early 90s, car thefts were practically endemic in the UK, with the number of cars stolen reaching over 600,000 vehicles being stolen in a year.

This was due to the unsophisticated nature of the locking systems, which could be broken and opened with tools you can find in your shed.

Therefore, most car thefts these days are at the hands of sophisticated criminal gangs with the equipment and technical know-how necessary to infiltrate newer locking systems by hacking keyless entry systems.


While manufacturers are constantly working to create better safety precautions, you can be sure the criminals are putting in just as much effort finding and getting through those loopholes whenever they make any progress.

Again, the most common way these criminals break into your vehicle is through a "relay attack", where they disrupt or hack the electrical relay your key fob makes with your car. Some manufacturers have attempted to solve this with motion-sensor fobs, but no matter your model of vehicle, you should be taking extra precautions if you have a keyless car system.

Tips For Keeping Your Car Secure

Here are a few tips and extra things you can do to keep your car safe if you have a keyless entry system:

Do not keep valuables in your car, or at least keep them out of sight of those passing by the vehicle.

Ensure that your car is properly locked and secured before you leave it anywhere.

These days, with sophisticated criminal gangs bagging themselves some premium vehicles every day, having alarms and immobilisers on your vehicle is essential.

Sometimes the old ways are the best, and fitting an old school steering wheel lock will do the job.

Leave the car in a visible place, such as beneath a street light or within the view of a CCTV camera when parking on the road.

Bear in mind where you keep your keyless fob and how close it is to your vehicle. You might also consider investing in a signal-blocking key pouch that blocks radio signals between your keyless tech and your car.

You might also ask your car manufacturer for a more advanced or upgraded keyless fob.

You can also check that your wheels are secured before you leave your car, so it would be far more difficult to steal if anyone dared to try.

If you are concerned about vehicle security get in touch today. Our security experts offer ghost immobiliser fitting and other vehicle security systems for customers throughout Wirral and Liverpool.

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