Kia Niro was most stolen battery electric vehicle in UK last year

The Kia Niro was the most stolen battery electric vehicle in the UK last year, research by Leasing Options has found.

According to data gained under a freedom of information request to the DVLA, 199 Niro models had been stolen, more than double the next most taken EV, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 (96 documented thefts).

This was a fivefold increase compared to 2022, which saw 36 Niro models had been stolen.

The third most stolen EV was the Kia EV6, which fell victim to theft on 91 occasions.

The Jaguar I-Pace was fourth, with 45 stolen. Last month Jaguar Land Rover stepped up its efforts to reduce the number of Range Rovers being stolen amid a surge in insurance prices for the luxury SUV.

Kia was also the brand of car stolen the most in 2023 with 290. Hyundai saw the second highest taken, at 187.

In third spot was Nissan, with 91 EVs pinched in 2023. The Leaf, with 88 thefts, represented 97% of these.

Despite the Tesla Model Y and Tesla Model 3 being the top two best-selling electric vehicles in the UK last year, it Tesla ranked only eighth overall, trailing behind competitors such as BMW, Audi, and MG.

In 2023, BMW saw 38 of its vehicles stolen, MG followed closely with 35 vehicles stolen and Audi recorded 32 thefts.

In contrast, Tesla recorded 29 thefts throughout the entire year. Specifically, the Model Y accounted for 11 thefts, while the Model 3 witnessed 10 thefts, and the Model S experienced only seven.

Mike Thompson, chief operating officer at Leasing Options, said: “It’s worrying to see the rise across the amount of EVs, and other vehicles, being stolen throughout the UK.

“For drivers who own one of the manufacturers or models highlighted as being targeted by thieves, we urge them to take the steps to make their car as protected as best it can be.

“Whether that be using padlocks or surveillance to keep an eye on the vehicle. Make sure your insurance is correct and up to date, and if your lease car is stolen, contact your provider as well as your insurer.”

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