Pick-Ups Picked by Thieves Most: Top 10 Vehicles Targeted

Based on rates of insurance claims for theft, the Ford F-250 unseated the Cadillac Escalade as the favorite target for thieves, according to the Highway Loss Data Institute.

"General Motors has put a lot of effort into new antitheft technology, so that may help explain the decline in the Escalade's theft rate," says HLDI Vice President Matt Moore. "On the other hand, sales of the Escalade have fallen in recent years, so there may be less of a market for stolen Escalades or Escalade parts."

Apparently thieves dig pick-ups, which occupy 4 of the top 5 spots and 6 of the top 10 on HLDI's list. Why? The HLDI says many pick-up claims involve the theft of equipment from the truck bed.

(Claim frequencies are per 1,000 insured vehicle years. An insured vehicle year is one vehicle insured for one year, two for six months, etc.)

Click on the "Next" button at the bottom right to find out HLDI's latest list of vehicle with the highest theft rate from 2010-2012.

10. Chevrolet Tahoe

With a starting asking price of $41,400, the large SUV is involed in 4.4 claims per 1,000 vehicle years.

HDLI finds the average loss payment per claim on a stolen Tahoe is $5,367.

9. GMC Yukon

Another large SUV that retails higher than some average U.S. salaries is the GMC Yukon. Its starting price is $41,760 and it has been the ninth most coveted vehicle for car thieves during the past two years.

Claims frequency: 4.5 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $6,276

8. GMC Sierra 1500 extended cab

The starting asking price drops significantly with the eighth spot on HDLI’s most stolen list. It also marks the introduction of large pickups as hot commodities with the criminal element. The GMC Sierra 1500 extended-cab model normally retails for $28,610.

Claims frequency: 4.7 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $5,908

7. Chevrolet Suburban 1500

The MSRP for the "very large SUV" is $45,360.

Claims frequency: 5.4 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $4,468 

6. Cadillac Escalade 4WD

Once a regular occupier of the No. 1 spot on this list, the HLDI theorizes GM's antitheft technology may explain why the Escalade falls to No. 6.

The large luxury SUV carries the highest MSRP of the bunch. On average, it will set drivers back $67,290 at the dealership.

Claims frequency: 5.5 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $6,508 

5. Ford F-350 crew 4WD

A very large pickup truck, the Ford F-350 crew with 4WD sells for about $37,370. During the past two years, insurers have paid out more per claim (on average) for it than any other model of vehicle in the Top 10.

Claims frequency: 5.6 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $7,517  

4. GMC Sierra 1500 crew

Another large pickup likely to be "gone in 60 seconds" is the GMC Sierra 1500 crew, which typically retails for $35,885.

Claims frequency: 6.0 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $6,366

3. Chevrolet Avalanche 1500


Claims frequency: 6.1 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $6,163

2. Chevrolet Silverado 1500 crew

The Silverado is the last of four Chevys on the highest claim-rates list, but it actually has one of the lowest average payments per claim.

Claims frequency: 6.7 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $5,463

1. Ford F-250 crew 4WD

HLDI says theft rates are generally declining due in large part to ignition immobilizers. But that doesn't explain why the Ford F-250, which has had a standard immobilizer, is tops on this list.

Claims frequency: 7.0 per 1,000

Average loss payment per claim: $7,060

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