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By the time you read this article, 5 cars will have been stolen. Auto theft is one of the most common crimes, taking place every 24.6 seconds. The list below details the 10 most stolen cars, the reasons why they are stolen, and what you can do to protect yourself.

10. Nissan Maxima – 6,947 stolen in 2012.

This car, even with the alarm, is a target for thieves. They are prized for their powerful engines and sleek looks. Nissan offers an immobilizing security system, which leaves the car immobile without the registered key, but that does nothing to stop thieves from loading the car onto a tow truck - or simply dragging it away - and stripping it for parts. MSN.com notes that black market has a huge demand for Maxima parts, leaving many Maxima owners in jeopardy.

9. Nissan Altima – 9,169 stolen in 2012.

The Altima is one of the most recognized and loved cars on the road. It also comes standard with two very expensive, easy to sell parts: high-end Xenon headlights. Car and Driver published an article by Patrick Bedard about how thieves are targeting these Nissan Altimas for a select few parts. He says that in less than a minute, thieves can steal over $1,100 worth of parts off of an Altima, costing the owner of the car a $4,000 repair. The Altima has a huge demand for parts, and the black market is constantly on the lookout for these particular lights.

8. Acura Integra – 9,555 stolen in 2012.

The National Car Insurance Bureau says that Acura Integras are one of the easiest cars to steal, consistently making their "Most Stolen Cars" list. They also are easy to part out, leaving no trace of the original vehicle. Some models came with chipped keys, but without additional security precautions installed, Integras are sitting ducks.

7. Dodge full-size pickup – 11,755 stolen in 2012.

These vehicles are targeted for removable parts that people are looking to replace - most commonly the tailgates or the wheels. Since these parts are hard to remove quickly, many thieves steal the vehicle only to leave it abandoned somewhere else after gleaning the wanted parts. Also, many thieves target trucks with toolboxes or other accessories in the hopes that they can get tools or other items to sell.

6. Dodge Caravan – 11,799 stolen in 2012.

These large vehicles are targeted for their large storage space, along with removable parts that can be resold. The Caravan's lack of security features, coupled with the simple ways to hotwire them, make the vehicles prime targets.

5. Toyota Camry – 16,251 stolen in 2012.

Camrys have always been a popular car. Their parts also have a high resale value. In fact, the parts in the car are worth more than the car itself. Many stolen Camrys also end up making a long trip overseas, where they end up as taxis. These cars also have parts that remain consistent throughout the years, so many end up being parted out.

4. Chevrolet full-sized truck – 23,745 stolen in 2012.

Toolbeds and equipment in the back of a truck is a top reason they are stolen. Also, the large vehicles have a high resale value south of the border. They are sometimes used to commit other crimes, especially when outfitted with tools.Trucktrend.com notes that 2012 was the first year that more than one full-size truck made the “most stolen” list.

3. Ford Truck – 26,770 stolen in 2012.

Ford trucks usurped the Lincoln Navigator as the top truck/SUV stolen. CNN Money says that these flashy trucks have a low insurance pay out, but a high price on the black market. They can be easily disassembled and sold for parts. Many thieves will also use these vehicles as storage for future crime sprees.

2. Honda Civic – 47,037 stolen in 2012.

Unfortunately, Hondas are extremely easy to break into. Thieves only need a ground down Honda key to gain access to any Honda vehicle. Also, the location of the unlock switch makes it easy for thieves to gain access. The parts are easy to resell, and the cars are plentiful.

1. Honda Accord – 58,596 stolen in 2012.

By far, the choice of auto thieves everywhere is the Honda Accord. For many car thieves, this vehicle is an easy break into - under 120 seconds is the average time it takes to break in. Most alarms have an easy-to-locate bypass switch, as well as being vulnerable to the same ground down key syndrome as the Civic. Both cars have a very vulnerable ignition, making the process even simpler.

Regardless of what kind of car you have, it is at chance of being stolen. Make sure it is protected. If you need Indiana auto insurance, give TCU Insurance Agency a call today at 574-256-6070.

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