Essex remains one of the UK’s car theft hotspots, according to the latest data.

Analysis undertaken by vehicle tracking firm, Tracker, shows the county saw the fourth highest car thefts in 2020.

But that was down two places from 2019.

London remains the country’s car theft capital, with West Midlands and Greater Manchester in the other two places above Essex.

Tracker has also revealed the most frequently stolen cars in Essex.

These are:

  • Range Rover Vogue
  • Land Rover Discovery
  • Range Rover Sport
  • Range Rover Autobiography

Tracker says Land and Range Rovers are, however, the most commonly recovered vehicles, with 37 per cent of stolen cars found.

Around 23 per cent of stolen BMWs are recovered, while 18 percent of Mercedes are also returned.

Tracker says Range Rovers are the most targeted vehicles for crooks across England.

Last year’s data also showed other cars on the hit-list included BMW X5, BMW 3 Series, Land Rover Discovery and the Mercedes-Benz C-class.

Analysis also shows there was another annual increase in keyless car thefts in 2020.

Clive Wain, Head of Police Liaison for Tracker, said: “Yet another annual increase in the number of cars being stolen by thieves exploiting keyless car technology should ring alarm bells for everyone, regardless of the make and model they drive.


“Thieves use sophisticated equipment to exploit keyless technology by hijacking the car key’s signal, typically from the security of the owner’s home, and remotely fooling the system into unlocking the doors and starting the engine.

“This is commonly known as a “relay attack” and accounted for 93% of all our recorded thefts in 2020. This nudged up from 92% in 2019 but represents a shocking 27% increase in the last 5 years.”

Although lockdown measures in Spring of 2020 saw an overall reduction in general crime figures, Tracker saw vehicle theft shoot up again once restrictions were lifted.

Mr Wain added: “Our July stolen recovery figures were up 50 per cent compared to April and May, so car owners need to be extra vigilant as we move out of lockdown in the coming months.

“We always encourage drivers to use traditional visual deterrents such as crook locks and wheel clamps to frighten off criminals and protect their car.

“However, in the event of a theft, stolen vehicle tracking technology will significantly help police quickly close the net on thieves and return the vehicle to its rightful owner.”

Tracker offers vehicle tracking systems which are supported nationwide by UK police forces. Tracker SVR solutions work like an electronic homing device.

A covert transmitter is hidden in one of several dozen places around the vehicle.

There is no visible aerial, so the thief won’t even know it’s there.

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