When you purchase a luxury car there are many amenities and benefits that you hope to receive for the additional zeros added to the price; superior in-car technology, superb handling, and luxurious interior—just to name a few. Unfortunately, the extra cost doesn’t make it immune to being stolen.
A report by the National Insurance Crime Bureau compiled a list of the top 10 luxury cars stolen. German made Mercedes-Benz had three models that made the list—the C-class, E-class, and S-class—with the C-class topping the list at number one. BMW, also German made, had two cars on the list with the S-series making the number two spot. Although Infinity, Acura, Cadillac, and others had cars listed the majority are German made.
While German cars may feel disproportionately targeted the report found that the thefts had less to do with the country of origin than the number of cars on the market. Mercedes and BMW are top selling car brands and the models frequently targeted are also more frequently purchased. And of course the cities that they are most often stolen from—New York, Los Angeles, and Miami—are also leaders in new car sales and at the top of the luxury market.
Unfortunately there has been a slight rise in car thefts in the last year. With many cities, particularly in California, suffering budget woes there are fewer law enforcement officers to combat the problem. Most cars that are stolen are stripped and their parts sold in black markets. Luxury car parts are more often sold overseas. In cities close to the Mexican border, hot cars are often driven past the border before law enforcement has the opportunity to catch up. From there they are used for drug runs as well as parts.
Overall luxury cars are a small percentage of the total number of cars stolen; almost 4,500 in a four year period. Luxury car owners can rest a little easier knowing that the recovery rate for luxury vehicles is over 80% thanks to GPS tracking, remote engine turn off, and other features not equipped on standard vehicles.