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2/19/2013 - Ford Escape most-stolen SUV

The Ford Escape is the most popular car for thefts in recent years.

Over the past four years, vehicles that are ideal for large families have been some of the most frequently stolen vehicles on the road.

According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau from January 2008 through June 2012, approximately 20,000 sport utility vehicles were stolen from their rightful owners. The count also included crossover utility vehicles

Several automakers produce their own SUV and CUV versions, but some were targeted by thieves more frequently than others. NICB notes the Ford Escape saw the highest rate of SUV theft, as more than 1,000 were steal in the four-year period. The second-most common SUV make and model stolen was the Chevrolet Tahoe at 856, followed by the Toyota RAV4 at just over 800, Ford Edge at 739 and the Dodge Journey at 721.

The Illinois-based vehicle theft prevention firm notes that there have been a considerable number of reports suggesting that the luxury SUV Cadillac Escalade was stolen more than any other, but in reality it has never cracked the top 10.

The report also detailed where these types of automotive thefts most frequently took place. At more than 3,000 over the four-year period, California has the distinction as the state in which SUVs and CUVs were purloined the most, particularly in the Los Angeles, Long Beach and Santa Ana areas. Following the Golden State is Texas at 1,826 and Florida at just under 1,800.

Experts say that automotive thieves are becoming increasingly sophisticated with their schemes as they attempt to enter a vehicle and make off with it, but they also indicate that silly mistakes made by the owner often provide easy access, such as leaving the keys in the ignition.

Whether car heists are commonplace in a given region or not, insurers say it's a good idea to upgrade a policy to one that's comprehensive, which cover theft.

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