By on August 3, 2016

1996 Honda Accord

It’s hard to keep a good car down…or in your driveway.

The National Insurance Crime Bureau released its annual “Hot Wheels” report this week, identifying the most stolen vehicles in the U.S. It seems that thieves just can’t shake their appreciation of Clinton-era Civics and Accords.

The most stolen vehicle in the country last year was the 1996 Honda Accord, a 19-year-old model that saw a total of 52,244 thefts. Honda should be proud — not only are its old models still popular, but there’s still 42,244 of them on the road worth stealing.

In the number two spot is the 1998 Honda Civic, of which 49,430 were stolen. Far less popular, but still in high demand, were 2006 Ford full-size pickups. Decade-old versions of the world’s best-selling vehicle took the number three spot with 29,396 thefts.

Rounding out the rest of the top 10 list, in declining order, are: 2004 Chevrolet full-size pickup, 2014 Toyota Camry, 2001 Dodge full-size pickup, 2014 Toyota Corolla, 2015 Nissan Altima, 2002 Dodge Caravan, and the 2008 Chevrolet Impala.

The top two picks generally favored coastal states, and were most popular in California, where both the ’96 Accord and ’98 Civic saw just over 28,000 thefts each. Thieves in the Southern and Midwestern states seemed to prefer Chevy pickups, but so did their comrades in Vermont. In Ohio, Maryland, Illinois and the District of Columbia, the Dodge Caravan was the go-to ride for the illegally self-employed.

Among new vehicles (model year 2015), the Nissan Altima topped the list with 1,104 thefts, followed closely by the Chrysler 200 with 1,069. Maybe this is why Fiat Chrysler Automobiles can’t sell a 200 to save its life — people are getting them for free.

The rest of the new vehicle list is a who’s who of popular sedans. The only truck or SUV in the top 10 is the GMC Sierra.

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91 Comments on “1990s Hondas Are Still Number One (with Car Thieves)...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    You don’t steal ’90s Hondas in rust areas, that’s the cause of this uneven distribution.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      Exactly. If I lived in a rust-belt state and somebody stole my 90s Honda, I’d pray for him.

      In fact, that’s exactly what our pastor (this is back when I was a Christian) said to us in 2012 or so, when his 1995 Dodge Ram daily-driver was stolen.

      He replaced it with a regular-cab, manual-windows-and-locks Silverado 1500, and then converted it to LPG.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        The power of LPG compelled him!

        Having driven a Samsung SM5 (Read: Nissan Teana/Altima + bodywork) LPG in Korea, I wasn’t sold on it. Because, Holy Crap is there no torque for thou.

        I can recall we were driving about in the rural areas with some hills, and I was going up this curving hilly part – foot ON FLOOR, and it wouldn’t get above I think 45mph.

        I’m like “Gasoline engines plez.”

        • 0 avatar
          Kyree S. Williams

          I’ve never driven one. I would just find it inconvenient and irritating.

          The pastor’s oldest son has an LPG-converted Titan, too.

        • 0 avatar
          bumpy ii

          Sounds like a good drivetrain for a hybrid. Electric motor = lots’o’torkes. LPG conversion = pennies per day.

        • 0 avatar
          Lorenzo

          E10 is 112,000 BTU/Gal and LPG in 91,000 BTU/Gal. There shouldn’t have been that much difference in performance, unless the fuel delivery was set for maximum economy, or the engine wasn’t that powerful to begin with. I remember those old Japanese pickups: they had a lot of low end torque, but they weren’t very fast.

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        I owned an 1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme back when it was at the top of the “most stolen” lists (and I lived in Southfield, MI). True to form it was stolen.

        I’d like to shake the SOBs hand because the insurance payout was likely more than a dealer would have given me for a car with a swaybar mount that had recently become detached due to frame rust.

        • 0 avatar
          Kyree S. Williams

          And that’s when you come out ahead, and thank your lucky stars for desperate thieves.

          Now why was the Cutlass Supreme so popular to steal? Was it because of its ease, or because of the value of the parts?

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            Parts value because so many had been sold new that there was a demand for parts to keep the remaining ones on the road.

            It was worth more dead than alive. Black market value of a 307 V8, posi-trac rear, blue velour full brougham interior, locking Oldsmobile wire-wheel covers, factory AM/FM cassette, power everything…

          • 0 avatar
            Kyree S. Williams

            Makes sense. Our ’85 Riviera had the 307, I think.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I believe only the 307-Y was available in MY85.

        • 0 avatar
          MRF 95 T-Bird

          Back during the peak auto theft 80’s my uncle had his 1984 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme stolen in Northern NJ. It was found a few days later in Newark basically intact except a broken steering column (typical way to jump ignition) and missing wire wheel covers. Insurance paid for his rental and the repairs and he got many more miles out of it.

          They were quite popular hence the demand for the parts but also easy to steal, just go through the ignition column.

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            The Olds Cutlass was the Camry of its day, as far as sales figures. This was even prior to 1982, when the A-Body Ciera added to the aggregate of the RWD G-Body.

            IIRC, this went on until 1986, when the Taurus took over the crown for a few years, then the Accord took it into the ’90s, trading blows with the Camry along the way, before Camry took it alone, and to the present.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            That ignition column design remained largely the same until MY02.

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        I think it’s odd that Honda is the one with the rust reputation when my newer Nissan has more potential for structural rust issues! Hondas have that very visible rear quarter panel rot, but I’ve never heard of serious problems with actual structural components rotting out, or even things like floor pans going.

        Getting a quote on getting some welding path-work done on the front of my “new” Maxima, worst case scenario I’ll be welding in an entire new part of the radiator support.

      • 0 avatar
        indi500fan

        What’s the pricing these days on LPG? I looked on gasbuddy but didn’t find much. The local truck stop has it for $3/gal which is no bargain compared to gasoline, but I assume most buyers are RVs for cooking/heating usage.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      No, they are more frequently stolen in CA because there are that many more of them to choose from. Not only is the population much greater Honda had a higher market share in CA in the 90’s than they did in the midwest.

      • 0 avatar
        Kyree S. Williams

        True. The midwest was still Detroit-country, back then, and you were more likely to see a Cutlass Ciera than an Accord.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        “there are that many more of them to choose from.”

        And that’s also because there’s no rust there.

        • 0 avatar
          Scoutdude

          Sure some may have been taken off the road earlier due to rust but a thief isn’t looking for a rust free car they are looking for a car with the engine, trans, seats ect to either fix their own POS or to sell.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            My theft standards would be too high, I would not be good at thievery.

            Your Civic has a cracked mirror housing, I’m not interested.

          • 0 avatar
            VoGo

            Ugh, look at the coffee stains on the seats. If you can’t be bothered to clean your seat fabric once in a while, I can’t be bothered to steal your car. It’s as simple as that.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I was about 30% of the way to passing on the GS430 I bought, because the guy had not cleaned the interior and there was dried coffee on the seats, carpet, and down the center console.

            My dad was there and as we were test driving he goes, “Man, this guy has a serious coffee habit.”

            And that’s probably why it had not sold in the few days it was for sale before I bought it. It was hard for me to look through the coffee-soiled parts and see there was nothing else wrong with the car.

            Stains came right out an application of Corey’s OCD Clean (TM).

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            Who cares if the passenger side mirror is cracked if you need the driver’s side for your hooptie.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            “Who cares if the passenger side mirror is cracked if you need the driver’s side for your hooptie.”

            Got to check on your sarcasm filter, it’s on the fritz.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            “Corey’s OCD Clean (TM)”

            As Seen on TV!

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Oh man, that is a legit product. Like Gorilla Glue or Lava Soap. Includes carpet striping!

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            You need to get Vince the Shamwow guy to rep it.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Look how it gets these hookers’ tears right out.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Hooker’s tears. Blood. Other fluids.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vince_Offer

    • 0 avatar
      NoGoYo

      The average Honda Civic around here built before 2000 is rusty, poorly repaired, and equipped with a fart can and tinted windows.

    • 0 avatar
      jimmyy

      Nope. Lots of very old Toyota and Honda cars in the northeast. But, the very old Detroit products are nowhere to be seen because they are in the junkyard.

      They never bought Toyota and Honda in the middle of the country. They still dont get it.

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        jimmyy,

        My fiance’s grandparents in Massillon Ohio (grandpa worked his whole life at Timken in nearby Canton) bought their first Honda in 1994, a 5spd Accord sedan of the generation featured in the top photo. That car is still in the family, handed down to grandkids with 250k on it. It is fondly talked about “I never had to put a lightbulb in that car!” (not 100% true of course) and I think it was a motivating factor behind her grandfather recently buying a ’13 CRV as his final ride. The low mile Bonneville that they had in between always had some minor work needed, and the 52k mile Concorde that they inherited from a relative was starting to make some ominous noise at start-up and had failed A/C, but it likewise was handed down to grandkids and is still on the road. Those Accords were made in Marysville, so I think that made buying a Japanese nameplate easier to bear, as they were buying local and supporting local families. My fiance’s parents likewise switched from GMs to Toyotas in 2005 and have since bought nothing but (1 Highlander, 1 Rav4, 2 Camries, 1 Prius, 1 ES300h) with a random used Volvo S60 thrown in the mix.

        The Midwest makes a ton of Toyotas and Hondas by the way. Marysville Ohio, Greensburg Indiana, Lafayette Indiana, Princeton Indiana, Georgetown Kentucky, are some of the big factories that come to mind.

        • 0 avatar
          tresmonos

          Your grandfather is a rare breed. Timken’s production personnel can be some of the most insanely skilled when it comes to ‘tribal knowledge.’

          That entire company is fascinating. Granted, Timken is winding down most of what they had in Canton due to the union.

          I was very fortunate to get a tour of some of their SC facilities (including their old Excelsior / Torrington needle plant prior to it’s sale to JTEKT) and to learn about their processes. One of the best ran manufacturers I’ve ever seen.

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            He’s a great guy, I sadly spend more time around him than my own grandparents, but I’ve really bonded with the born and bred Ohioans. Where he lives now is within 1 mile of where he was born, he spends most of his time watching sports or hanging out at the local clubhouse chewing the fat over some beers with the other retired steel guys and war vets. Stories for days. His childhood stories are actually remarkably similar to my parents’ and grandparents’ upbringing in rural Siberia. Raising hogs, growing gardens and canning all their own food, etc.

            Both his sons are in manufacturing/steel, one does something for Alcoa I think, the other works at a sheetmetal stamping facility.

            My wedding will be in downtown Canton, the guest list will be inevitably be well represented by the steelworker crowd.

          • 0 avatar
            tresmonos

            that will surely be a great wedding. thank you for sharing that tidbit about your life, gtemnykh. That’s definitely a way of life that is worth savoring.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    Yes, I had a 1990 Honda Accord EX (with the rare plum-colored leatherette option) that someone tried to steal. All they managed to do was break the window and jack up the ignition switch, so they couldn’t have been too competent at vintage Honda thefts.

    As far as these newer cars, we’re to the point that most all cars (including the aforementioned Camry and Corolla) have chips in the bases of their keys that prevent the engine from starting if an object is forced into the ignition slot and is able to turn. And the Altima has a standard proximity key, which eliminates all that. Since we’re not to the point of mass-hacking, how are these newer cars being stolen, and why so frequently? Are their owners leaving the keys in them?

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      They obviously didn’t know what they were doing if they broke a window. The trim along the top of the doors is just double stick taped down and once you pull that off you have a clear shot at the lock linkage.

      I’m surprised about the Toyota, but maybe like Honda a few years ago they didn’t have full trust in their system so they installed a back door to bypass the system. There were a number of cases where insurance companies tried to claim fraud when people wanted compensation for their stolen Hondas that had transponder keys. Honda finally admitted that there was a back door for customers that involved applying and releasing the parking and service brakes in a particular sequence. Additionally all cars with a transponder system have some sort of back door that is accessible with the right scan tool. Many of those have a timer though and it takes 10-15 min from the time the tool requests access until the system will allow programing of the module to recognize a new to it transponder.

      Of course there is also the tow truck. In certain areas no one will blink an eye at a car going down the street with the alarm going off if it is on the hook. They just figure the person either parked illegally or is getting repossessed.

      • 0 avatar
        Kyree S. Williams

        They absolutely did not know what they were doing, because I exploited that trim deficiency myself once when I locked the keys inside. Fortunately, they were kind enough to break the little fixed window on the driver’s side rear door and use that to unlock said door, instead of busting one of the larger windows.

        As far as tow trucks, that would raise some eyebrows here, but not in a lot of other places. And a lot of cars with smart keys, including my own, have procedures for releasing the transmission from park without using a key, if you have access to the inside of the vehicle. The bottom line is that if someone truly wants your car, he/she can nab it. But that’s why you get insurance.

      • 0 avatar
        Drew8MR

        I watched two dudes in a tow truck grab one of those hideous “Lexus” Matrix looking things just today on a busy Santa Ana street. One dude jacked up the rear and threw some dollys under the wheels while the other guy hooked up the tow bar. They were rolling in maybe 2 minutes. I doubt 5 people noticed and I doubt any of those 5 batted an eye.

        • 0 avatar
          VoGo

          “Dude, are you sure that was a Lexus we just jacked?”

          “Yeah, yeah. It had the gold L on the back and everything”

          “Well what kind is it – looks like my cousin’s Aspire”

          “Says here ‘CT200′”

          [email protected]! We got a hybrid. No one wants those!”

          “Damn. Let’s pull up at the Whole Foods up ahead and just dump it.”

  • avatar
    VoGo

    I think that what is driving this is:
    A. Honda sold a lot of Accords 20 years ago
    B. They last a long time
    C. They weren’t known for their theft deterrence
    D. Because they are known to be reliable, Accords are popular with the poor. Many thieves come from poor areas, and tend not to travel far for their next fix.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      I disagree with B&D

      D: I don’t know where you live but in my area the poor can’t afford to buy a used Accord they are more likely to be driving an Alero, Grand Am or other similar GM car.

      B: because they are so expensive people keep them on the road past their useful economic life which means that there is high demand for the parts to keep them on the road. That means that the thieves know that parts will sell quickly and at a high price, that is if they aren’t stealing them for parts for their own car.

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        D.
        In my experience living in a pretty down and out part of a metropolitan area in the Midwest, while the 94-97 Accords (and 90-93 and 98-02) have a pretty substantial presence (mostly within the hispanic community), the vast majority of the vehicles I saw were more-so turn of the century domestics. I’ve been at traffic lights where literally every car except mine was some flavor of GM W-body (Impala 00-05, Impala 06-11, Grand Prix 97-02, Grand Prix 03-09, Century, Regal). Taurus 00-07, Chrysler LH and clouds cars also very prevalent, along with every kind of Explorer, Blazer, Expedition, Tahoe, etc.

        B. What exactly is expensive on an Accord? The biggest downside is a timing belt that inevitably will be neglected and the result of it snapping is a game-over scenario most of the time. Back when I was an intern I helped one of the interns out with her beaten to death Accord, as well as helping several friends wrench on a pair of ’92s. The fancy-pants double-wishbone suspension is actually surprisingly cheap to rebuild with control arms costing like $20-30. Engines and transmissions are solid, plenty of room in the engine bay to work on it. Nothing fancy electrically speaking, and the yards are full of donor cars for body parts. The biggest pain is the hub over rotor front brakes, just a pants-on-head stupid design. That’s literally the only unpleasant part of an Accord that I can think of in terms of maintenance/repair.

        • 0 avatar
          Kyree S. Williams

          Yeah, the timing belt is what rendered my F22A-powered 1990 Honda Accord inoperable. The timing belt snapped (probably due to the short and infrequent trips the car took) and the valves got bent up. A family friend desperately needed a car and had been borrowing it at the time. She was so apologetic, thinking it was her fault; we reassured her that it was not.

          Damn interference engines.

          (Never mind that the vast majority of new cars have interference engines.)

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            How many miles and how many years on the belt when it snapped? Hondas are generally pretty good about lasting up to and (well) beyond their stated interval, barring unusual circumstances.

          • 0 avatar
            blppt

            “(Never mind that the vast majority of new cars have interference engines.)”

            I agree— belt+interference engine is just a really stupid design. I think most cars nowadays have chain driven cams, which, can break, but far less likely than your average belt.

            Never mind the fact that it takes your average mechanic many valuable hours tearing down the engine to get to the friggin belt, which was generally recommended to be changed around 50-60K or so.

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            blppt, I’d say it cuts both ways. Certainly, well engineered modern chain-driven valvetrains are a blessing as a whole. The problem lies in a surprising number of failures due to stretched chains and failed tensioners/guides. Admittedly a minority of cases, but if you’re one of those folks that had to pony up for a chain or guide replacement, all of a sudden a belt that’s been engineered to be replaced easily looks awfully nice!

            60k belt intervals went by the wayside for the most part by the mid-90s, although Mitsubishis surprisingly still needed it every 60k right through the mid 00s. Most brands went to 90k or 105k intervals.

            On MOST vehicles, a timing belt should not take a mechanic “valuable hours,” and if it does, you should find a new mechanic.

            As cherry-picked examples, the belts on my old Mazda and my current 4Runner are easy to access and change (longitudinal orientation), the motors are non-interference. Historically, belts on 4Runners in particular are known to go about double the recommended 90k interval, not that I personally would wait that long.

          • 0 avatar
            JuniperBug

            For what it’s worth, my ’04 Concorde is currently sitting at north of 150k miles on its original timing belt. Oddly, when I inquired to the mechanic who’d serviced it before my ownership, he advised me to leave it alone. According to him, these things go to scrap with 200k miles and the original timing belt still intact. If I had more time on my hands, and/or had more money or emotions invested in the thing, I’d probably change it anyway. In the meantime, I’m kind of curious as to how much neglect this thing will take.

          • 0 avatar
            Instant_Karma

            The timing belt on my 1990 Integra sedan broke at 214k. Fortunately, while idling at a stop light so nothing was damaged. I bought it with about 110k on the clock and a receipt for a Gates timing belt that was supposedly recently installed, but when I took it apart the factory Honda belt was still there. It was no biggie, really, in the grand scheme of things. The clutch was already slipping a tad and I would have had it apart for a clutch/water pump/timing belt job within a week or two anyhow.

          • 0 avatar
            Kyree S. Williams

            Yep. A lot of mid-aughts German engines had timing-guide tensioners made of putty, and they rendered many a car immobile.

            I’m not sure how old the belt was, quite frankly, which was part of the problem. This was before I really knew to do my own car maintenance, so when my parents got it ready for me, I assumed their mechanic addressed that. He may not have.

          • 0 avatar
            Ryoku75

            It doesnt help the timing belt is quite an exercise on the F22, still the belts can last an absurdly long time past intervals.

        • 0 avatar
          Scoutdude

          Well that timing belt snapping is an expensive repair to do the new valves and all the labor so there is a market for those engines and they bring a pretty good price.

          • 0 avatar
            Kyree S. Williams

            Well, that happens on a lot of cars, quite frankly. Thing is, the overwhelming majority of Honda engines have been interference units, and they were doing it well before it was so common.

            Nowadays, a lot of interference engines have chains, but like someone said, they can suffer from subpar pulleys, sprockets or chain tensioners…leading to stretched or snapped chains and the same kind of damage you’d have with a snapped belt, and even more expense.

          • 0 avatar
            JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

            Kyree, it does, but when it happens to a Kia Rio or any Suzuki Daewoo, for example, its not worth fixing. An Accord in decent shape but ten years older IS worth fixing.

          • 0 avatar
            blppt

            “On MOST vehicles, a timing belt should not take a mechanic “valuable hours,” and if it does, you should find a new mechanic.”

            Disagree—Now, granted the last car I had with a belt and not a chain was an early 90s Maxima VG30 (had it in early 00s), but I have never had a car with a belt that didnt require 3+ hours of labor to replace.

        • 0 avatar
          bumpy ii

          Yeah, Honda held onto captive rotors pretty late. Most everyone else had slip-ons by the end of the ’80s.

  • avatar
    shaker

    Hmm… I wonder where Chevy Volts are on this list?

    (Have Fun)

  • avatar
    heavy handle

    I used to know a guy, back in the 1980s, who thought Hondas were a car sharing service. Said they were so easy to steal that he would steal one to drive a few blocks on an errand, and get another one for the drive back.

    I guess that 1990s Hondas aren’t any tougher to steal.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      Bahahaha. Probably through the end of ’97 (last year for fifth-gen), the nineties Hondas were really extensions of the eighties Hondas. It was the same technology that had been massaged over the years.

      And of course the ’90 – ’93 Accord, albeit groundbreaking and modern in design for the time, was basically an 80s product.

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        Now now, I’d say the 90s Hondas are distinct from the 80s cars, owing to the much improved suspension refinement and handling (thanks to their now-famous all-wheel double wishbones), became much better rust-proofed (if you think 90s Hondas are bad, let me show you 80s Hondas), and hit a new level of reliability and longevity. Also, they forever abandoned carbs (thankfully).

        I came awfully close to getting a 96-97 Accord as my beater, and it would have been a fantastic choice, but I just wanted to branch out and try something different for a change. The 96-97s got improved galvanization from what I’ve heard, and casual observation seems to confirm that they are much less prone to the famous rear-quarter panel rot than the 94-95 cars. A 5spd is a must on these older Accords IMO, both in terms of durability and driving pleasure (and plain old acceleration capabilities).

        • 0 avatar
          Kyree S. Williams

          Well, sure. And you are correct in that Honda’s build quality was much better in the 90s. But the cars were still, in spirit, the same as those of the 80s, especially in terms of simplicity in design. On the Accord, it probably wasn’t until the seventh-gen (2003-2007) that the philosophy changed.

          • 0 avatar
            johnds

            Having owned a 94 (258k), 97 (117k), 98 (189k), 99 (253k), 03 (245k), and 2007 accord, my experience has been the 2007 accord has been the most reliable, well put together car. I only have 173,000 miles, but it’s been trouble free.

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            That was the last good generation with the SLA front suspension, as the elephantine 8th-Gen’s weight and proportions offset any handling advantages.

            Only bad thing about the 7th-Gens was that post-MMC (’06, ’07), the wheel sizes increased without coordination of shocks and springs, so the ride was a little rough.

        • 0 avatar
          Ryoku75

          Indees 96-97s got better rust proofing, they also did away with that annoying FiTV that makes your idle pulsate in the morning.

  • avatar
    indi500fan

    ” In Ohio, Maryland, Illinois and the District of Columbia the Dodge Caravan was the go-to ride for the illegally self-employed.’

    Here in the midwest these are the go-to ride for Mexican families.
    At the local Pick-a-part, they are always swarmed by guys speaking Spanish.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      indi500fan you talking about the yard on 16th street?

      Fun place to go, it’s too bad the roach coach caught on fire! I got a steal of a deal on a driveshaft for my 4Runner there, as I was laying under the truck a couple of hispanic guys walked up and sized up the mismatched rear shocks on said donor truck before walking away disappointed. Who the heck buys used shocks anyways?!

      I’ve also seen people try to return obvious junk parts for full refunds (installed the nicer part they got from the yard, brought back their old crap parts) instead of just the ‘core’ return. That sort of scam doesn’t get by the sassy ladies working the register, scammers get sent packing.

  • avatar
    06V66speed

    I found it rather amusing after I had learned that car thieves tried stealing my stepfather’s ’03 Chrysler Town & Country beater van.

    Ummm… he paid $500 for it.

    It has rust. Bald tires. Wheel covers. A missing third row seat. And nothing short of 230K miles (although to be fair, it had about 200k at the time).

    These “thieves” actually did nothing but leave the car where it was; yet, in the process, somehow managed to rip the whole dammed steering column out which… my parents unfortunately replaced.

    The old Town & Country continues to live, but it’s got to be on it’s last leg (but HEY! the air conditioning still works!).

    Furthermore, if I have to start hiding my 2006 Accord Coupe from the local goons, it’s going to cramp my style.

    ADDENDUM: I will never forget when I was about 19 I was hanging out somewhere rather undesirable in South St. Louis City (about 2004, IIRC). It was me, a good friend of mine, and two other rather shady characters who were “friends of a friend” (at the time, mind you). I had my ’99 Jeep Cherokee with me.

    So… shady character looks at my Jeep Cherokee. Then looks at me, and says:

    “Nice Cherokee. We steal those”.

    (No Jeep Cherokees on the list? I presume because they’re getting harder to find, perhaps?)

    Sigh. Good times… I guess… lol

  • avatar
    Corollaman

    In So. Fla they are indeed popular with thieves, the main reason I won’t buy one. I know 2 people who own mid 90’s Accords and they have had to install alarms and other deterrents to keep their cars in their possesion.

  • avatar
    Corollaman

    In So. Fla they are indeed popular with thieves, the main reason I won’t buy one. I know 2 people who own mid 90’s Accords and they have had to install alarms and other deterrents to keep their cars in their possession.

  • avatar
    Blackcloud_9

    Steph,

    Your numbers are way off. In the graphic in the article shows that the Honda Accord WAS the most stolen car. However, right below it it says: “Most stolen model: 1996 – 7,944 thefts”.

    So, 52,244 was the TOTAL number of Accords stolen last year. Of those 7.944 were of the 1996 variety.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    “Clinton-era Civics and Accords”

    Would that be 2017 model year Civics and Accords?

  • avatar
    gasser

    This makes a bit more sense. If Honda sold 400,000 Accords (very optimistic number) and from 1990 to now half survived…are we to believe that there is a 25% theft rate??

  • avatar
    never_follow

    That poor Allroad, sitting all sad on it’s leaky bags :(

  • avatar
    kit4

    Old Camrys were also on the top list only until a few years ago.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      If my viewing of COPS on tv is any indication, the old Toyotas were notorious for worn out keys door and ignition cylinders allowing a key for one car to open just about any other Camry/Corolla. Lots of episodes with junkies getting pulled over in beat up 80s Camries and Corollas and the cop simply asking him whether he used the ‘worn out key’ trick.

  • avatar
    sco

    Our 98 Civic EX was stolen from a parking garage in a small town Northern California last year so I guess I’m very representative. I had many of the same questions including why someone would steal a car with a mismatched hood and 225K miles on it. The car was recovered at a local cheap motel a week later. The car was not stolen for parts but apparently because the thief needed a car for himself and his family (diapers and shopping spree receipts left in the back seat). And he/she knew how to steal a 98 Civic, no damage whatsoever, no broken window or stripped steering column despite the fact that the car was locked. I think sometimes we give criminals too much credit. In this case the thief saw the car, needed a car, knew how to steal it, and stole it. And they were going to drive it until they got caught or until they ran across another one. Just an impulse steal, no international parts cartel involved.

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    I keep my cherry, 116k mile ’90 Integra safely locked in the garage, while the “good” car stays outside.

  • avatar
    sayahh

    “Maybe this is why Fiat Chrysler Automobiles can’t sell a 200 to save its life — people are getting them for free.”

    Or maybe they did sell a 200, and people hated it so much, they left the door open and the key in the ignition on purpose.

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    I guess I was lucky, had a 92 and a 94 and thiefs would just ignore them. Helps I kept them stock.

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    Such a sober serious aesthetic design this car. Nothing is superfluous, no frills.

    Such a refreshing change from the Lexus fright mask this site is getting of late.

  • avatar
    gtemnykh

    A friend in San Diego had his rock-stock ’92 Accord EX Coupe stolen, recovered rolling on mismatched steel wheels, with the exhaust cut off and some random under-hood components missing (wiper fluid reservoir cap? go figure). He replaced the exhaust and a pair of tires and just kept driving it up to 220k or so then sold it here in Indiana for $1200 before moving back home. A fairly clean rust free Honda is quite a valued commodity around here, it went through 2 more owners in the next 2 years, and I just saw it get sold for that same $1200 on CL a month ago. She’s still got a lot left to give, as long as the t-belt holds. Last I worked on it (replacing front axles), there was just a single loose control arm bushing in the rear end, that’s the only notable mechanical issue I found. A/C still worked and everything. I actually tried to buy it but it had already sold.

  • avatar
    SavageATL

    The fact that there are still 14 year old Caravans around to steal says a lot, despite the reputation broadcast on this website, for their durability/reliability. When I bought my ’06 I laughed because the dealer pointed out that it had an engine immobiliser. “Who wants to steal a four cylinder Caravan?” I asked. And then someone tried to steal it on two separate occasions and did a LOT of damage but, because of the immobiliser, couldn’t actually move it. Apparently they are common targets for burglars because they are invisible and then you can break into a house and steal everything in the house and fit it in the Caravan.

    • 0 avatar
      Ryoku75

      Its my experience that anything domestic is considered unreliable, awful, unlawful, and badly assembled while anything Japanese is pure gold, since we’re weeabos apparently.

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    This paticular Accord generation used Integra brakes and a few Prelude bits in the suspension, you could swipe those bits and sell them for a pretty penny to anyone looking to keep their ricey coupe in da hood.

    Of course then you have modded cars (91% of all remaining Hondas), which are serious thief magnets just for their currently rented rims or whatever junk the owner chucked on.

    Weirdly, I know two garages with early 90s Accords that have been “dumped” on them (owner wint pay for the repairs), In surprised thiefs havent gotten to them yet. Must be because they’re some of the only stock Accords left.

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