New insurance data has revealed that the Toyota Aqua was the most stolen car in New Zealand last year.
A total of 17,000 vehicles were unwillingly taken from their owners in 2023, a 43 per cent increase on 2022’s figure, making it the second-highest year for vehicle theft in the last five.
According to the data, thieves are primarily targeting cars made in 2005, 2006, and 2014. While those model years may seem relatively modern, some vehicles weren’t simply fitted with adequate anti-theft features, such as the case with the Aqua.
The second most stolen car in NZ last year was the Nissan Tiida, followed by the Toyota Corolla which seemingly became more popular with thieves after jumping up the list by five places to third.
Surprisingly, thieves didn’t seem to target the Mazda Demio as much as they previously did, with the model dropping to fourth.
A handful of other Mazda and Toyota models were also among the most stolen cars last year, as well as the Subaru Impreza and Legacy.
In terms of regions, Auckland is still NZ’s hot spot for vehicle thefts, with over a third of the country’s thefts occurring in the city. The next was Christchurch where 17 per cent of cars were stolen in 2023, followed by the Waikato with 12 per cent.
Local insurer AMI states that new car theft claims show that thieves generally target vehicles that are quick to steal, such as those without keyless ignitions, immobilisers, or alarms. Data also showed that cars are mostly stolen under the cover of darkness between 10 pm and 5 am.
Good ways to deter car thieves include parking in covered or well-lit areas, always locking your car, using a car cover, ensuring valuables are out of sight, and avoiding leaving windows open when the vehicle is unattended.
Top 10 most stolen cars in NZ for 2023
- Toyota Aqua
- Nissan Tiida
- Toyota Corolla
- Mazda Demio
- Mazda Atenza
- Toyota Mark X
- Toyota Vitz
- Subaru Impreza
- Subaru Legacy
- Toyota Hilux