COLORADO STATE PATROL PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE
A recent analysis by the Colorado State Patrol (CSP), the Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority (CATPA) and its partners the Colorado Division of Insurance (DOI) and the Colorado Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has resulted in the necessary effort to alert consumers of targeted threats against certain motor vehicles.
Most of the vehicles are late model Kias and Hyundais, within the last decade of manufacture, that have traditional ignition systems that are started with a physical key. Criminals are not targeting Hyundais and Kias with touchless FOB ignition as much. Total theft of these makes has increased 82% from 2021 to 2022.
State Patrol and partners have seen an increase in vehicle thefts despite the vehicles meeting the US Market Security Standard for new automobiles. Some major auto insurance carriers are no longer writing new policies on these vehicles. The Colorado State Patrol, CATPA, DOI and DMV want to make Coloradans aware of target hardening options available to current owners of these vehicles – as well as businesses who buy or sell these vehicles.
Vehicle hardening methods are a way to improve vehicle security or deter vehicle theft through additional equipment implantation. Hyundai recently released an announcement that they are rolling out free anti-theft software for several of their targeted vehicles. This free upgrade by Hyundai service centers will include a marking decal to show updated security software on the vehicle.
The 2017-20 Elantra, 2015-19 Sonata and 2020-21 Venue models are eligible for the upgrade currently, while other models will be eligible come June. However, the upgrade will not be compatible with all models. Owners of these vehicles wanting more information can contact Hyundai toll-free at 800-633-5151 or Kia at 800-333-4542. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) also issued a news release with additional info regarding the update.
CATPA not only recommends this manufacturer update, but also asks owners of these targeted vehicles to consider additional vehicle hardening equipment. Vehicle theft is not only extremely costly to the owner, but to all of Colorado; stolen vehicles are often used in the commission of other crimes and this all leads to increasing insurance premiums. Auto theft hurts all Coloradans. Additional vehicle hardening equipment may come in the form of physical deterrent and theft prevention devices like steering wheel locks, parking boots and other physical vehicle feature limiting devices.
Other recommendations for heightened vehicle security equipment include the installation of aftermarket security systems that provide the physical deterrent features of car alarms and GPS tracking. The CATPA preference for most efficient vehicle hardening upgrade would be to engage a qualified repair facility for the addition of a vehicle immobilizing system. These systems are complex and create several layers of anti-theft security that greatly reduce the rate of vehicle theft, when used.
CO Theft Data – Hyundai and Kia info for the Calendar Year 2022 – Study Sources
Pie Graph 1. The Colorado Department of Revenue for motor vehicle registrations for Hyundai and Kia vehicles occurring from Jan. 1, 2022 through Dec. 31, 2022. Pie Graph 2. The Colorado Stolen Vehicle Database Repository for stolen vehicles reported to the Colorado Crime Information Center from Jan. 1, 2022 through Dec. 31, 2022.
Consumers with questions about their insurance can contact the Colorado Division of Insurance Consumer Services Team at 303-894-7490.