a different side of Israel

100 Cars Stolen Daily in Israel

Stolen CarEver wake up one morning and find that you car is ‘missing’ from its parking place? This unfortunate circumstance occurs to more than one hundred persons every day all over Israel; and the situation appears to be getting worse despite more sophisticated alarm and immobilizing devices being installed by the car owners. Israeli insurance companies are the big losers in this game of ‘hide and seek’ as less than 20% of these stolen vehicles are ever found. Recent statistics by the Police Stolen Autos Division show that most of these cars are stolen between the hours of 4 p.m. to midnight (54%), with only 19.5% being pinched from 00:00 to 7:00 a.m.

The average age of the stolen vehicle is 5 indicating that these cars are being dismantled and sold for spare parts. The burnt-out or dismantled car bodies often found in orchards and other remote spots testify to this fact as many older cars are worth much more dismantled than whole! The stolen car of choice is still the Subaru, being easier to break into than many other models. More than 3,980 Subarus have been stolen this year alone. Following up are Mitsubishi (1,965), Mazda (1,953) and Fiat (1,572). 53% of all cars stolen come from the country’s center with 885 being pinched in October alone. New cars require special ‘homing devices’ to be installed to make locating them easier. These devices, which are very expensive, don’t seem to slow the thieves down, as more than new 700 Mazdas have been stolen this year alone.

‘Private’ vehicles are desired more than commercial types (vans, trucks etc); though more commercial vehicles are disappearing as well. Along with these, a large number of two-wheeled vehicles (motorcycles and ‘vespas’) are being stolen.

An increasing number of cars are being stolen following homes being broken into by thieves and car keys stolen along with other household items. For this reason, both the police and insurance companies have been advising people not to keep keys and remote control car opening devices in places where they can be found easily, such as hanging by the front door (many people really do keep their keeps there).

Car leasing companies are taking a big knock from this problem since many of the late model vehicles currently on the roads are leased by companies for their employees. Though the lessee customer is required to pay for insurance, the leasing company is still the registered owner of the stolen vehicle, and therefore the one who loses out – along with the insurance company, of course.

Some ‘reprieve’ may be in store, for the insurance companies anyway, as beginning in January, 2007, the government will levy much higher taxes on the use of lease cars, making their use much more expensive for company employees. That won’t help a lot, however, as ‘lease cars’ are newer, and less desirable for thieves who steal them for dismantling into spare parts.


  1. Hey!

    That looks my MY HONDA in that photo!

  2. Put ejection driver seats in every
    Israeli car. You’ll see Palestinians
    car thieves flying in the air like
    cannon balls all over Israel.

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