The cars most likely to be vandalised or stolen

Updated on 16 February 2022 | 13 Comments

Is your motor a target for thieves? New data from the Driver and Vehicle Leasing Agency (DVLA) reveals the top 10 most stolen cars.

Do you have one of the nation’s most stolen motors?

The DVLA has released details of which motors are being pinched most often, following a Freedom of Information request from LeaseLoco.

In total, across 2021, 48,400 stolen cars were reported by the police to the DVLA. That is up from 46,800 in 2020 and works out at an average of 133 cars being stolen every single day. 

Buy cheap new tyres online with Protyre

The most frequently stolen cars UK

So, which cars are most enticing to crooks?

Here are the top 10 stolen cars, according to the DVLA data.


Number of cars stolen in 2021 

Ford Fiesta


Land Rover Range Rover


Ford Focus


VW Golf


Mercedes Benz C-Class


BMW 3 Series


Land Rover Discovery


Vauxhall Corsa


Vauxhall Astra


Mercedes Benz E-Class


Given the Fiesta’s position as one of the most popular cars around for both new and used models, it’s perhaps not a huge surprise that it has top spot on the list of most-stolen motors.

However, it’s notable from the rest of the list that motoring criminals are not just nicking whatever car they can find, but targeting specific, high-end models.

A perfect example is the fact that the Range Rover has second spot in the rankings, as well as the position of both the Mercedes Benz models and the BMW 3 Series.

Will I get my stolen car back?

Having your car taken is of course a complete nightmare. But once you report it to the police, do you have any chance of getting it back?

Rivervale Leasing crunched the numbers last year, going through data going back to 2010 from the Office for National Statistics.

It discovered that an extraordinary 75% of cars weren’t returned to their owner, the highest yearly figure since 2010.

Save up to £260 on your car insurance with

The car theft hotspots

Of course, how at risk your car is likely to be from car thieves can vary hugely from area to area.

While some regions have a particular problem with stolen cars, it’s far rarer in others.

Last year MoneySuperMarket released data on car theft hotspots, based on car insurance enquiries. Here’s how the worst offenders look.

Postcode area

Car theft (per 1,000 capita)

IG (Ilford and Barking)


RM (Romford)


B (Birmingham)


N (North London)


BR (Bromley)


SW (South West London)


HX (Halifax)


DY (Dudley)


E (East London)


SS (Southend on Sea)


This is important as your location will play a part in calculating your car insurance premium.

To put it bluntly, if you live in an area with a higher than average numbers of car thefts, your insurance is going to cost you more as the insurer will view you as a greater risk.

It’s a similar story with where you keep your car overnight. If it’s kept in a locked garage, it’s obviously going to be less at risk to thieves than if it’s parked on the street.

Find parking quickly with JustPark

The cars most likely to be vandalised

Mini Cooper among the most vandalised cars, according to 2018 research (Image: Shutterstock)

Some cars are more likely to suffer vandalism, rather than outright theft.

Back in 2018, insurer Churchill crunched the numbers of its own claims data to find the cars that most often suffer from vandals.

  1. Smart car 
  2. Mini 
  3. Alfa Romeo 
  4. BMW 
  5. Mazda 
  6. Peugeot 
  7. Saab 
  8. Fiat 
  9. Mercedes 
  10. Citroën

The most common form of vandalism was cosmetic damage, accounting for 15% of all claims, followed by 12% of claims, which related to damage to the front bumper. 

The proportion of claims reporting front door damage was also 12%.

Protecting yourself from car thieves

There is far more you can do to keep your car safe than simply parking it in a garage though.

We’ve highlighted some of the smartest ways you can guard yourself against car thieves to ensure you aren’t one of the thousands of motorists each year who have to report a stolen car to the police.

Check out how to beat hi-tech car thieves.

*This article contains affiliate links, which means we may receive a commission on any sales of products or services we write about. This article was written completely independently.



Be the first to comment

Do you want to comment on this article? You need to be signed in for this feature

Copyright © All rights reserved.