The National Insurance Crime Bureau has taken a closer look at how often car thieves target the Toyota Prius. As it turns out, the most popular hybrid on US roads has a very low theft rate, and when it does get stolen, law enforcement are quick to return the machine to its rightful owners. All told, 2008-2012 Prius models saw a theft rate of one in 606 vehicles compared to one in 78 for all models on the road from the same model year period. Just 2,439 Prius hybrids were stolen in the US between September 4, 2000 and June 30, 2012.

Not surprisingly, California holds the dubious honor of taking the lion's share of those thefts, with 1,062. Florida took second place with 127, followed by New York, Washington and Texas. Toyota has sold 1.2 million Prius models in the US, which means the vehicle constitutes more than half of all hybrid vehicles on the road today. You can take a look at the full NICB press release below for more information.
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NICB: Car Thieves Get No Charge from Toyota Prius

Hybrid Popular With Consumers; Not With Thieves

DES PLAINES, Ill., Nov. 21, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) today released a comprehensive report that examines the theft history of the Toyota Prius. From its introduction to the U.S. auto market in 2000 through June 30, 2012, the report covers all Prius thefts reported to the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) beginning with the very first Prius theft on September 4, 2000.

The Toyota Prius is the top selling hybrid electric vehicle in the U.S. With over 1.2 million sold in the U.S. as of April 2012, it makes up half of all the hybrids on the road. Yet, despite its growing popularity, an analysis of Prius theft data from NCIC shows that they have both an exceptionally low theft rate and a markedly high recovery rate.

A comparison of theft rates by model years showed that the 2008-2010 Toyota Prii[1] had a much lower theft rate (one in 606 vehicles reported stolen) than the average for all 2008-2010 models (one in 78 vehicles reported stolen).

There have been 2,439 Toyota Prii reported stolen in the U.S. between Sept. 4, 2000 and June 30, 2012. There has been a general increase each year in the number of Prius thefts with the exception of 2009, which had a drop from the year before. It also appears that 2012 is also on track to have fewer Prius thefts than occurred in 2011.

The top five states for Prius thefts in descending order were California (1,062), Florida (127), New York (111), Washington (92), and Texas (89).

Anyone with information concerning vehicle theft and insurance fraud can report it anonymously by calling toll-free 1-800-TEL-NICB (1-800-835-6422), texting keyword "fraud" to TIP411 (847411) or by visiting our Web site at www.nicb.org. Or, iPhone or iPad users can download the NICB Fraud Tips app to make it easy to quickly send a tip and get a response.

About the National Insurance Crime Bureau: headquartered in Des Plaines, Ill., the NICB is the nation's leading not-for-profit organization exclusively dedicated to preventing, detecting and defeating insurance fraud and vehicle theft through data analytics, investigations, training, legislative advocacy and public awareness. The NICB is supported by more than 1,100 property and casualty insurance companies and self-insured organizations. NICB member companies wrote over $319 billion in insurance premiums in 2010, or approximately 80 percent of the nation's property/casualty insurance. That includes more than 94 percent ($152 billion) of the nation's personal auto insurance. To learn more visit www.nicb.org.


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  • 42 Comments
      PeterScott
      • 2 Years Ago
      I prefer the other theft deterrent: A manual transmission.
      rollingrock11
      • 2 Years Ago
      car thieves steal cars for parts. and the electric parts in a Prius are useless to them as it requires special knowledge and training to disassemble the electric parts without killing yourself.
      Redmastif
      • 2 Years Ago
      "Yeah dad I just stole a car!" "Really? Son, you are now officially part of the business." "Yeah it was a Prius!" "You're dead to me."
      Natural
      • 2 Years Ago
      I wouldn't drive one if it was given to me.
      The Q
      • 2 Years Ago
      Any official explanation on why?
        • 2 Years Ago
        @The Q
        [blocked]
      mbukukanyau
      • 2 Years Ago
      No self respecting thief would want to be seen in that thing.
      Mazdaspeed6
      • 2 Years Ago
      The prius with the 17 inch wheels is one of my favorite cars. I even like the wedge shape. It's the most fuel efficient car in America and likely one of the most reliable. What's not to like?
        Pj Taintz
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Mazdaspeed6
        lets rephrase the question to something a little easier on anyone with a brain. what is there TO like about a prius?
        Sir Duke
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Mazdaspeed6
        Actually, the most fuel efficient car in America is the Chevrolet Volt. Don't have to believe me, take any 10 Prii and any 10 Volts, you'll find that over its life, the Volts are magnitudes more efficient. EPA numbers be damned. Try making a Prius go 10K miles on a single tank of gasoline.
          majortom1981
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Sir Duke
          The volt is the most fuel efficient car if you have a plug where you park. Those of us who live in condos or apartments cant plug one in.
        Ben Dover
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Mazdaspeed6
        You could put 17" wheels on my dishwasher, but I still wouldn't be particularly excited about it (unless those wheels were spinners).
      Nick Silver
      • 2 Years Ago
      That's because they don't want to be seen in one!
      Ben Dover
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wow. That has to hurt the ego when you realize you're driving a car that even lowlife thieves don't want.
      Bill
      • 2 Years Ago
      Don't most thieves usually steal for a joyride, then abandon the car? There's no joy in driving a Prius.
      powertour
      • 2 Years Ago
      Based on driving my wife's Prius, I can understand why no one would want to steal it. It's like driving a 68 Buick 225 with 2 plug wires missing. BORING
      oRenj9
      • 2 Years Ago
      When you look at the list of the top stolen vehicles, each one of them has one thing in common: they are made of up parts that are easy to sell for a good price. The Prius is known for its reliability and Prius owners are far more likely to use the dealer for any issues they do have because there aren't very many mechanics out there that advertise that they work on hybrids. These two properties combine to make a soft market for used parts, which disincentivizes theft. Combine that with the strong security systems in place for the car and the ho-hum nature of its driving dynamics and you have a car that a thief wouldn't look twice at. (The first look would be for your iPod.)
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