Hondas — beloved by commuters and college students for their endurance and gas mileage — are a popular target of auto thefts in Wichita, police said Friday.
And the numbers are increasing.
Over the last month, about 40 of the cars – mostly models from the 1990s – have been stolen from around the city, Wichita police Lt. Doug Nolte said Friday.
“It’s a real popular car to steal,” he said. Nationwide, the cars are one of the top vehicles targeted by auto thieves, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, he added.
Last November, the police department issued Wichitans a similar warning after thieves took seven Hondas over a three-day period. Although the total number of Hondas stolen so far this year was not immediately available, Nolte said the recent rash of thefts when compared to last year’s reports “leads us to believe they (thieves) are targeting a certain time frame” of the year.
Authorities recommend installing a secondary anti-theft system – such as a steering wheel lock, alarm systems or other equipment – to deter thieves.
As of Thursday, police had recovered 914 of 1,280 vehicles — about 70 percent — of all makes and models stolen in 2012.
By mid-November 2011, nearly 1,500 auto thefts had been reported in Wichita; about 80 percent were recovered, according to a news release.