This Wrecked Tesla Model S Was Stolen From A Tesla Store
There have been a few high-profile Tesla Model S thefts (most recently, a Model S owner tracked and located her stolen EV using Tesla's app), but as it turns out, the Tesla Model S is actually the least stolen automobile in the U.S.
The most high-profile Model S theft was the one in which the thief crashed the EV into a building after splitting the car in half.
In both cases, the Model S was believed to have been stolen by someone who had access to the key fob. In the case of the tracked Model S, the owner reportedly left the fob in the EV. As for the split-in-half, crashed Model S, the thief was believed to have obtained the key fob from a Tesla service center.
So, both thefts involved access to the key fob. Without the fob, the Model S seems damn near theft proof. As the Irish Times reports:
"Has Tesla made a theftproof car?"
"Its Model S is the least stolen car in the United States, but it’s not yet clear if that’s because it’s hard to steal, because it’s not worth stealing yet or simply because crooks haven’t yet worked out how to bypass its security."
"...Honda Accord. Fifty-four thousand of them were stolen in the US last year, making it the United States’ most popular car among thieves. Eighty-four per cent were from 2007 or before; not at all coincidentally, in 2008 Accords started to come with anti-theft engine immobilisers as standard"
"If the Accord is the most pinched car in the US, then the Tesla Model S is, by almost any mainstream standard, the least stolen. It’s not yet clear whether that’s because it’s hard to steal, because it’s not worth stealing yet or simply because crooks haven’t yet worked out how to circumvent its security systems."
"The Model S currently has a theft rating of 0.15 vehicles stolen per 1,000 built. That compares to an across-the-board average of 3.51 stolen per 1,000 produced. Part of that must be down to Tesla’s decision to equip every Model S with a 3G chip, so that if the car is taken it can be tracked and even remotely shut down."
While the Model S is definitely difficult to steal and easy to recover, some believe that its low theft rate is due to lack of demand for Model S parts. The Model S is relatively new (and sold in somewhat limited numbers), so the demand for used parts is low, not to mention that it's an expensive car, so the average Model S owner is unlikely to go to the black market in search of parts.
There may be some truth to this idea that second-hand Model S parts are in low demand, so theft is low too, but we believe the word has spread that the Model S is both difficult to steal and easy to recover and that certainly deters the average thief.
Source: The Irish Times