It takes only 20 seconds for an experienced car thief to steal a brand new luxury car with a keyless ignition. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT
first increase in cars thefts in ten years

Luxury cars targeted as car thefts surge

The number of stolen cars went up this year for the first time in over a decade, according to new figures by the Swedish industry organisation for insurance companies, Insurance Sweden. And the figures show that it's luxury vehicles that are most likely to get stolen.

It takes only 20 seconds for an experienced car thief to steal a brand new luxury car with a keyless ignition. When an owner locks his or her car the thief records the wireless code with a tool called a car grabber and can then unlock the car and drive away without raising any suspicion. It's this kind of car theft that's on the increase, at least in Stockholm, according to Stockholm Police.

"We see that many criminal groups from others parts of Europe with a lot of experience and technology are targeting luxury cars in Sweden. Once they've figured out a way around a certain manufacturer's security systems we often see a surge of thefts in a very short period of time," says Torbjörn Serrander at Larmtjänst AB, a non-profit branch of Insurance Sweden to newspaper Dagens Nyheter.

The number of stolen cars increased from 10,001 in 2012 to 10,092 in 2013. The newspaper writes that the increase could lead to more expensive car insurances.

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