Data released this week by AA Insurance shows that vehicle theft has increased by 36.5 per cent across the country for the year ending 30 June 2022, compared to the previous year.
In Auckland alone, there has been a 43 per cent increase in cars being stolen with those parked on the street increasingly becoming a target for thieves.
AA says the thefts correlate to the increase in ram raid crimes being committed which often involve vehicles that tend to be of lower value and are more than five years old. However, cars are also being stolen for the purpose of joyriding and for thieves to get from A to B.
It is also said that a majority of thefts occur during weekends or warmer months.
Expensive security systems and immobilisers are worth the investment to protect your vehicle from becoming a target for thieves, especially if you drive a frequently targeted model.
Most frequently stolen car models in New Zealand:
- Nissan Tiida
- Toyota Aqua
- Toyota Mark X
- Mazda Demio
- Mazda Atenza
Beau Paparoa, Head of Motor Claims at AA Insurance says the numbers are a timely reminder for car owners to be extra vigilant about the security of their vehicle.
“While AA Insurance will always be there to help customers get back on the road if their vehicle is targeted, our claims data clearly shows that even simple security measures like a steering wheel lock can be an effective deterrent against thieves looking for a quick smash and dash,” Paparoa said.
“With theft and attempted theft clearly on the rise, AA Insurance is encouraging all Kiwis to be extra vigilant about car security, particularly if your car is routinely parked on the street.”
How to protect your vehicle from being stolen:
- Ensure doors are locked
- Keep valuables out of sight
- Try park in a garage, carport or off-street where possible
- Park in a well-it area if on the street
- Install visible security like an alarm light, immobiliser or steering wheel lock
- Be vigilant over weekends and during warmer weather when there are more thefts reported.
- Install a vehicle kill switch in a location only known to you
Stolen vehicles can be reported to the New Zealand Police here.