So you’re in, or around, Denver and are looking for a used car. Once you’ve tackled the decision not to follow the masses and default to a Subaru Outback, Toyota Camry or Chevy Silverado you’re halfway there. But this is where the real search begins.
When looking for Used Cars in Denver drivers are likely to ask themselves many of the same questions asked by drivers throughout the U.S.
- “How many miles does it have on it?”
- “Can I get a Vehicle History Report?”
- “Is it within my budget?”
- “Are the payments low enough?”
- “Will it be reliable year-round?”
But one question that might go overlooked (and often does) by drivers in any geography is “How likely is this vehicle to be stolen?”
No. We’re Serious
It becomes easy for us to speculate that newer, more fashionable cars are the preferred target for car thieves. But it just goes to show you how easy it is to be wrong. Just because you’d prefer to be driving around in a shiny, loaded-up 2017 Ford Expedition, doesn’t mean that you’re safe leaving your 2007 Taurus (with a cassette deck) unlocked at night.
Newer vehicles are often easier to trace, especially with many security features and services becoming standard. Earlier models become a simpler grab, easily broken down into parts for quick resale. With this in mind, it becomes an interesting exercise to explore the most commonly stolen vehicles within any area. The lists might surprise you, and Colorado’s most recent list (as reported by the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association) is certainly no exception.
By no means are we implying that you shouldn’t buy any of these cars. We just want you to be as informed as possible when looking for your next used car because you might find yourself looking at any one of these.
A 2012 Subaru Impreza is surprisingly affordable for as low as $12,500. But in 2015 a total of 165 Imprezas (of different model years) were stolen in the state of Colorado. The most common? 1999. At nearly twenty-years-old, it goes to show you that potential thieves may not be looking for the vehicles you’d think they’d be looking for.
This year, the Toyota Camry was named the most popular car in Colorado. While this may be disputed by Subaru Outback owners, it is a sentiment that appears to be shared by the state’s criminal element. In 2015 a total of 180 Toyota Camry’s were stolen, nearly a 10% increase over the 163 stolen the year before. And if you’re looking at a 2002 model, just know that your new car is the most commonly stolen of them all.
Bumping out the Toyota Camry from its previous slot is the Acura Integra. With 193 Integra’s stolen in 2015, it showed another jump of nearly 20% over last year’s reported thefts. With 1999 Integra’s being the most popular, we begin to see a pattern of compact sedan styling that will continue all the way through our list.
Our first truck entry is the Chevy Silverado, of which 200 were stolen state-wide. Even a later model 2014 Silverado 1500 could be yours for about $18,900, but the most common choice among thieves goes back as far as 2001. It would seem that anything in-between is ‘fair game’.
Anyone looking for a Jeep Grand Cherokee could find a 2004 model for as little as $6,500. Jeeps, in general, are ideal for the Colorado lifestyle. This might explain why a total of 255 were lost to car thieves within a single year. Aside from their versatility, they also enjoy a long lifespan. This might be why the most commonly stolen model year, is a surprising 1995 model.
Another popular choice are RAM trucks, like the 1500 Sport. While you could find a 2014 model for around $24,900 you wouldn’t want i to be free for someone else. 345 RAM owners made that mistake in 2014, with the most common target being a 2001.
Even more favored? The Ford F-150 (of which Denver drivers could score a 2014 XLT priced around $28,900). The 1999 editions seem to be among the most popular, contributing to the 354 F-150’s which were reported stolen.
Even more popular than its ‘Grand’ sibling, the Jeep Cherokee is among the most commonly snatched vehicles out there. If you’re an enthusiastic off-roader, imagine the mixed emotions of finding a 2015 Trailhawk edition for $26,900…only to lose it. Regardless of trim level, a staggering 452 Jeep Cherokees disappeared in 2014, many of which were 1997 models.
While a lot of people may be focused on the facelift received by the Honda Accord in 2018, other parties seem to be more interested in Accord’s going back as far as 1996. That’s right, you better hold onto your new rear fascia because 1,110 Accord’s were stolen in 2015. This is another significant jump, with 965 having been stolen the year prior. Need more proof that Colorado car thieves love Honda?
Atop the list sits the Honda Civic, which you could find a 2014 EX trim level for as little as $13,900. Tread carefully. If you were surprised by the numbers of vehicles stolen above, the Honda Civic puts them all to shame. In the year 2015 a mind-blowing 1,306 Honda Civics were reported stolen, 200 more than were reported stolen the year prior. The most common model year? 1997. But it would seem that any Honda Civic within the last twenty years, is fair game.
Just as we’re not saying that owning one of these cars guarantees the likelihood of theft, we’re not implying that owning a different make or model makes you exempt from it. Always use best practices in choosing the areas in which you park, removing valuables from your vehicle, and keeping it locked. Consider investing in a security device or service, as well.
But most of all, enjoy your new vehicle. Whatever you choose, we hope you get to enjoy it for a very, VERY long time.