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Mike Waters' blog: 29 June 2011 - Another good reason to buy a new car

Date: 29 June 2011

Mike Waters is head of market analysis at Arval

There are plenty of reasons to upgrade to a new car. Modern looks often combine with reduced running costs, lower emissions and better driver safety. Now, recent figures throw up another reason that most of us don't even consider... a deterrent against crime.

Statistics from the Police show that a total of 107,000 vehicles were stolen last year. It might sound a lot but this demonstrates a significant reduction compared to the 119,000 in 2009 and 143,000 in 2008. Whats more, the majority of vehicles that were taken, were more than three years old.

When it comes to vehicle security, the manufacturers really have done their bit. Technology like immobilisers, alarms, toughened glass and tracking devices make modern vehicles a much less attractive proposition to criminals.

Even if a criminal does manage to get into a modern vehicle, they really do have nowhere to go, whereas with older models, the car can be started and driven away much more easily and accessories like radio's are easier to steal.

So with the manufacturers taking a lot of credit, the onus moves back onto the driver. The technology makes it difficult to break into or steal a vehicle but driver error may provide opportunity. Leaving a vehicle with the keys in it, leaving it running somewhere and leaving valuables on show in the vehicle are all welcoming signs to the opportunist thief.

As with many other areas of car technology, we regualrly rely on the vehicle to think and act for us. When it comes to vehicle related crime, it is very difficult to blame the technology and drivers must take responsibility for mitigating their own risk.

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