End of Land Rover Defender production sparks spate of UK thefts

In January, the Land Rover Defender reached the end of the road as the last of the iconic model rolled off the production line.

However, the end of production has sparked an increase in the levels of thefts of the vehicle in the UK.

Agricultural Vehicle Specialist at insurance company NFU Mutual, Clive Harris says our latest figures reveal that reveal that claims costs for theft of Defender vehicles rose to £1.8 million in 2015, an increase of 8% since 2014.

“Defender owners often have a strong attachment to their vehicle, whether it is a work horse, a means of transport or a vehicle for leisure where hours are spent on labours of love simply for the enjoyment of it.

Harris said the Defender holds great commercial and recreational value.

“If you own a Defender, don’t take any chances when it comes to keeping your vehicle safe and secure,” he warned.

“The fact that Defenders are a target for thieves is nothing new, but now that they are no longer in production they are a bigger target for thieves, so I urge you to consider fitting an after-market approved immobiliser and a tracking device if possible.

“When not in use Defenders should be parked in a garage or a secure area which is well lit. Never leave keys in the ignition and keep keys out of sight at home and when out in public areas,” he said.

Advice for securing your Defender

  • Fit a mechanical immobiliser such as a Thatcham approved steering or pedal lock
  • Fit an alarm for added security and consider adding a tracking device
  • Thieves will target component parts so consider marking them using a forensic marking solution or system
  • Keep the vehicle in a lockable building or park in well-lit areas, which are overlooked
  • Have the vehicle identification number etched on windows
  • Consider fitting a hidden battery isolation or a fuel cut-off switch
  • Take photographs of unusual features, modifications, damage or repairs which could aid identification if stolen
  • Ensure any valuables are removed from the vehicle, including satnavs