The Proton Wira has been the favourite target of car thieves for 11 years straight, according to data from Malaysia’s Vehicle Theft Reduction Council (VTREC).
VTREC bases its annual list of the most frequently stolen vehicles from insurance claims.
According to a report by The Star, 131 Wiras were stolen in 2021, followed by the Proton Iswara with 75. In third place was the Perodua Kancil. The top three models were Malaysian-made ones, with the Toyota Hilux the most-stolen foreign car in fourth place.
“The Wira was a popular brand back then, and there are still quite a number on the road even though production stopped in 2009,” said VTREC coordinator Mas Tina Abdul Hamid, who added that the thieves are quite often also suppliers of Wira spare parts. The recent shortage of vehicle spare parts due to the COVID-19 pandemic has also made the situation worse.
She said that car thieves often go for older and more popular car models, and it would only be a matter of time until they increasingly target the Perodua Myvi, which is currently in sixth place.
“The Myvi is a target because of its looks and the fact that it is among the people’s favourites,” Mas Tina said. “The trend is almost similar [to the Wira]. We now have a huge number of Myvi on the road, and it might be the target once production stops.”
For motorcycles, VTREC data showed that an average of one Yamaha 135LC was stolen daily, making it the most stolen motorcycle model for 2021. The Yamaha Y15ZR was in second place with 186 reported thefts, and Honda C100 was in third with 151 cases.
According to Mas Tina, car and motorcycle thieves employ different groups of people for each step of the process, making it hard for authorities to track them down.
“They have different people to steal and different groups to bring it to Thailand. Somebody else will sell them,” she said.