August 22, 2003 by Canadian Underwriter
The U.S.-based Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has released its annual report on the most stolen vehicles, with the Cadillac Escalade SUV topping the list.
The Escalade was the most frequently stolen among 2000-2002 models, and has the worst overall record for insurance losses due to theft. In fact, the vehicle is four-times as likely to be the target of theft versus the average of all other vehicles.
The IIHS’s Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI), which produces the list, notes that the vehicle produces 10-times more insurance losses than other vehicles despite being equipped with an anti-theft vehicle immobilizer. “These immobilizers have reduced thefts of other vehicles, but we don’t know why they don’t seem to be effective for the Escalade,” says HLDI’s senior vice president Kim Hazelbaker.
Last year’s most stolen vehicle, the Acura Integra, has fared better this year, rebranded as the RSX. It had appealed to thieves because its parts were compatible with the Honda Civic, which is still the case with the RSX.
The study also notes that although theft frequency has decreased since 1980, the average insurance payout on theft has increased.
Rounding out the top-five most stolen 2000-2002 models are the Dodge Stratus, Mitsubishi Mirage, Jeep Wrangler 4WD, and Lincoln Navigator 2WD. And rounding out the top-five in terms of insurance theft payouts for 2000-2002 models are the Chevrolet Corvette convertible, Lincoln Navigator 4WD, BMW X5 4WD and BMW 3 series convertible.