European marques have locked out the competition in testing conducted by the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council (NMVTRC) to identify Australia's most secure cars - those most difficult to steal.
Working with NRMA Insurance, the NMVTRC tested more than 70 current-model vehicles from across the Australian new car market as part of the Secure by Design program.
Judging each car against their standard-fit security systems rather than actual theft statistics, the tests assessed entry systems, engine immobilisers and vehicle identification technology.
Areas of focus included door and ignition locks, alarms, rear seat and boot access, glazing and engine immobilisers, along with post-theft identification technologies such as body stamping, security labelling and microdotting.
“While there are some luxury vehicles amongst the winners, the inclusion of the many affordable cars, with the Polo starting at around $20,000 clearly demonstrates that good security is within reach of everyday motorists and that other manufacturers should be aspiring to matching these levels of design," NMVTRC Chairman David Morgan said.
The people-mover and commercial vehicle segments went without winners however, with Mr Morgan noting that "the gap in security features between the big sellers in those classes - compared to the winners of the passenger car classes - was too great".
Mr Morgan called on Australian manufacturers to bring improvements to their vehicle identification technology, describing it as "essential" in combating thefts associated with black-market operations.
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