The BMW X5 4×4 is the set of wheels most favoured by car thieves, according to data released by vehicle recovery service Tracker.
The premium SUV topped the list of the most frequently stolen and recovered vehicles in both 2011 and 2012, closely followed this year by the Range Rover Vogue and Sport models, rising to number two from the seventh spot the previous year.
Highlighting the changing tastes of the light fingered, the high-powered BMW M3 has also risen up the ranks, taking the third sport in 2012, compared to its sixth place listing in 2011.
BMW dominated the most stolen rankings in 2011, with its models making up the top-three. However, last year, thieves shifted focus to the other premium German manufacturers, with the Mercedes SLK roadster and ML 4×4 in fifth and sixth place and the luxury CLS and E Class saloons in joint eighth.
Bringing up the rear were the Audi A4 and Porsche 911, in ninth and tenth place respectively.
BMW owners’ woes were compounded by the fact that a security issue came to light, meaning cars could be stolen from driveways without the keys and with minimal damage to the vehicle.
Commenting on the results, Stuart Chapman, police liason officer for Tracker, said: “It’s clear from our latest figures that thieves continue to target prestige models with the most expensive car recovered being worth £70,000.
“The average value of the cars we recovered in 2012 was just £25,500 and a number were below £5,000, confirming that you don’t have to own a luxury car to be at risk from thieves looking to make a fast profit.”