Home Auto News Toyota Prius Top Target for Catalytic Converter Thieves

Toyota Prius Top Target for Catalytic Converter Thieves


With the rate of limited metals increasing throughout the world, burglars are mining catalytic converters discovered on cars, SUVs and trucks to the discouragement of insurancecoverage business, law enforcement firms and state lawmakers — as well as the owners. 

Theft claim frequency for 2004-09 Prius designs was more than 40 times greater in 2020 than in 2016.

“We haveactually seen a considerable boost throughout the pandemic. It’s an opportunistic criminalactivity,” states Tully Lehman, Public Affairs supervisor for National Insurance Crime Bureau in an email to TheDetroitBureau.com. 

The NCIB counted 3,389 thefts in 2019 which increased 325% in 2020 to 14,433. 

Lehman states as the worth of the valuable metals consistedof within the catalytic converters continues to boost, so do the number of thefts of these gadgets. “There is a clear connection inbetween times of crisis, minimal resources, and interruption of the supply chain that drives financiers towards these valuable metals,” he stated. 

Rare implies expensive

The catalytic converters consistof platinum, palladium and rhodium. A current search on KITCO.com showed a 2021 high for rhodium going at $27,000 an ounce from March 19-22. Recently, according to KITCO.com, Rhodium is at about $13,250 an ounce. Palladium reached a high in 2021 of $2,890 an ounce on May 6. Recently, palladium hit $2,009 per ounce. And finally, platinum reached a high in 2021 of $1,266 on Feb. 19, however it was at $1,075 per ounce about one week earlier.  

Catalytic converter theft
Thieves can take a catalytic converter in less than a minute.

Typically, burglars will get $50-to-$250 per catalytic converter they turn in to recycling facilities, according to the NICB. 

The NICB includes thefts of catalytic converters tend to be from larger automobiles like big pickups and shipment lorries.  

These trucks are targeted due to greater clearance and forthatreason simpler gainaccessto to the catalytic converter. These automobiles are typically utilized as fleet cars which frequently drawin burglars as business trucks are typically saved in backyards and are left ignored overnight enabling a criminal to go in and getridof a coupleof in really short order.  

Toyota Prius targeted 

But another popular target of burglars is the Toyota Priuses, which includes two catalytic converters as well as the truth that as a hybrid, these converters tend to see less wear (corrosion) than those of other automobiles with equivalent miles, and forthatreason more important to burglars. 

NICB catalytic converter theft graph

In addition, the catalytic converters of hybrids requirement more of the valuable metals to work appropriately consideringthat they puton’t get as hot as those setup on traditional lorries. 

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Theft claim frequency for 2004-09 Prius designs was more than 40 times greater in 2020 than in 2016, HLDI experts discovered. Theft claim frequency was 58.1 declares per 1,000 guaranteed vehicle years for 2004–09 Toyota Prius designs in 2020, compared with 1.4 declares in 2016. 

“Car burglars understand their market,” stated HLDI Senior Vice President Matt Moore. “The need is high for catalytic converters, and they appear to understand which ones command the greatest costs, like those on the older Priuses.” 

The current scrap rate for the GD3+EA6 catalytic converter utilized in the 2004-09 second-generation Prius 1.5 was $1,022, according to market site AutoCatalystMarket.com, while the scrap rate for the GP1+TB1 converter utilized in the 2010-15 third-generation Prius was $548. 

In contrast, the converter utilized in General Motors designs such as the Chevrolet Impala and Pontiac Grand Am from 1999-2006 was valued at $269, and the converter utilized in the 2007 Ford F-150 FX4 was priced at simply $143. 

Processing catalytic converters for their metals needs advanced devices, however bulk scrap purchasers have mushroomed with the spike in rates for specific metals. All however a handful of states need purchasers to record sellers’ driver’s license numbers or other main recognition, and numerous forbid money payments above a specific limit. However, duetothefactthat catalytic converters are not marked with vehicle recognition numbers, it isn’t simple to recognize taken parts assoonas they haveactually been offered as scrap. 

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New laws target taken catalytic converters 

NICB catalytic converter theft graphic

But state lawmakers are taking notification of the increasing number of thefts of catalytic converters. 

In Ohio, for example, legislators have presented a expense, which looksfor to restriction the sale of catalytic converters on cars without evidence of ownership. The expense brandnames catalytic converters as “special purchase shortarticles” under the law, making it prohibited to be offered to any entity without evidence of ownership. 

The expense’s intent is to safeguard customers from catalytic converter theft and develop more transparent standards for companies. 

“Catalytic converter theft is on the increase here in our state and throughout the country,” keptinmind one of the expense’s sponsors. “Currently under the law, there is no responsibility on these taken items, and they are quickly taken from individuals’s lorries. 

“It’s my hope with this costs that we stop the sales of these converters to assistance our customers, companies and environment. Catalytic converter theft damages services, people, insurancecoverage business, the environment, and puts an excessive concern on law enforcement.” 

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