Despite being easier to steal, Kia vehicles are not car thieves’ No. 1 target, a new report shows. The unfortunate distinction belongs to the Charger SRT Hellcat, which is 60 times more likely to be stolen than any other car built between 2020 and 2022.
That’s according to the Highway Loss Data Institute’s list of the most-stolen vehicles for 2020-2022 models. Twenty-five Hellcat cars from model years 2020-22 had been reported stolen in insurance claims out of every 1,000 insured vehicle years, according to the report. By comparison, the most stolen car among 2017-19 model year vehicles, the Infiniti Q60, only had two theft claims for every 1,000 insured vehicle years.
“If you own a Hellcat, you better check your driveway,” Matt Moore HLDI senior vice president said in a statement on the institute’s website. “These numbers are unbelievable.”
Also on HLDI’s list is the Kia Sportage, which notched the sixth-highest spot, ahead of the Land Rover Range Rover 4WD and Infiniti Q50 4WD. Other Kia models like the Sportage 4WD, Rio and Forte rounded out the ranking.
Thefts of Kia and Hyundai vehicles rose sharply across the U.S. over the past two years after a TikTok challenge instructing people how to steal the vehicles using awent viral.
The cars’ vulnerability stemmed from the fact that from 2011 to 2022, South Korean automakers Kia and Hyundai opted not to equip their cars sold in the U.S. with “engine immobilizers,” making the cars easier to steal. The manufacturing flaw was at the center of a class-action lawsuit that the cars’ manufacturerin May.
Models with fewest theft claim
HDLI assembled its ranking using data from vehicle theft claims made to insurance companies across the U.S. The data only accounts for whole-car theft claims, and excludes claims for stolen vehicle parts and stolen items found within vehicles.
The study reveals that vehicle theft claims are rising overall. Other data also shows car thefts are surging. Vehicle thefts rose 59% across 30 U.S. from 2019 to 2022, an analysis from the Council on Criminal Justice shows.
Electric vehicles where among the 20 models with the fewest claims, along with cars manufactured by General Motors. HLDI accounts for the lower theft frequency which it says is typical of EVs, to the likelihood of their being parked “overnight in well-lit and comparatively secure areas for charging.”
View the complete lists of vehicles with the highest and lowest claim frequencies for whole-vehicle theft here.