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West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Foster has today revealed that car thieves in the West Midlands are stealing more Fords than any other car.

Almost 3,000 were stolen in the West Midlands in 2023, new figures the PCC is publishing today show.

Fords remain in top spot for the total number stolen, but the number has dropped by more than 700 from 2022.

Instead, thieves are increasingly turning their attention to Toyota, Hyundai, Kia and Lexus, all of which have seen a big increase in the numbers stolen in the last year.

Land Rovers were also sought after, with 43 per 1,000 registered in the West Midlands stolen – albeit this is another drop year on year.

Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Foster, publishes the police data annually to shine a light on the issue and to ensure vehicle manufacturers go further to improve vehicle security.

The Commissioner also wants to inform motorists about which cars are less likely to be stolen, so the information can guide their decision when buying a car.  

Some thieves are known to get around the onboard car security features in a matter of seconds, allowing them to drive off with the vehicle, whilst the owner sleeps at night. This can involve copying digital keys or boosting a car fob signal to trick the car into opening its doors and allowing its engine to start.

Many of the cars being stolen are taken to illegal garages, otherwise known as chop-shops, where they are cut up and sold for parts on the black market. West Midlands Police also expanded its vehicle crime taskforce last year, in order to clamp down on the growing trend of vehicle thefts and bring perpetrators to justice.

Luxury car brands like BMW, Audi, Jaguar, and Lexus feature prominently in the list, suggesting that thieves may target these vehicles due to their perceived higher value. Despite their smaller market share compared to mainstream brands, these luxury models are still prone to theft, emphasising the need for robust security measures across all vehicle segments.

The PCC is echoing West Midlands Police’s recommendations to drivers, that they should use a full steering wheel lock that covers the steering wheel, faraday pouch and ensure the car is locked when parked. 

West Midlands Police have plenty of vehicle crime prevention advice here.

West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Foster said: “Criminals are finding ever more sophisticated ways of getting around car security features and it is something that is deeply concerning. Cars are sometimes being stolen in less than a minute, as people sleep in their beds.

“I have asked West Midlands Police to crack down on car crime and go after the organised criminals, who are profiting from the thefts – and I am pleased to say they are making progress, because we have seen a 12% reduction in vehicle crime year on year – but we also need manufacturers to look again at onboard car security features, to ensure they are a top priority and fit for purpose, to prevent organised car crime gangs profiting from vehicle theft.”

Top 20 Car Theft Makes

Car MakeTotal Stolen 2022Stolen Per 1,000 RegisteredTotal Stolen 2023Stolen Per 1,000 Registered% Difference Between Total Stolen
Land Rover1,334511,11943-16%

Source: WMP Crime Database and Registered Cars from Department for Transport 2022.

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