How Likely Is It That Your Motorbike Will Be Stolen?

Over 8000 motorcycles are reported as stolen each year in Australia, making up more than a quarter of all vehicles stolen not recovered. This remarkable figure comes despite bike registrations accounting for just 4% of total registrations.

If you had to guess, what would you say were the top targets of motorcycle theft here in Australia?

If you guessed scooters, dirt bikes and sports bikes then you would be right according to the latest figures from the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council. It’s no surprise that the most stolen brands are the four major Japanese manufacturers as they are also the ones being sold at the highest volumes.

Even though Harley-Davidson is a very popular motorbike brand and generally carries a higher value than other cruisers on the market, the brand in Australia with the highest incidence of theft was Honda, closely followed by Yamaha.

Scooters made up the highest proportion of overall thefts with a total of (19%) in 2014, despite there being a downturn in sales throughout this period with scooter sales experiencing a 19.4% decline in 2014.

Off-road dirt bikes continue to be popular for thieves with (17%) and on-road sports bikes coming in at (13%). The numbers may be a lot higher for dirt bike thefts as a lot of the thefts seem to go unreported, especially kid’s motorcycles. This result may come from dirt bikes being a lot lighter and they generally don’t have ignitions and keys which in turn makes it easier for the criminals to just kick start them or lift them into a van and make their getaway.

It’s no surprise that the least stolen bikes seem to also be the heaviest and most cumbersome to steal with trikes rarely taken, and the same theory seems to apply to touring bikes with them representing just 1% of all bikes stolen along with cruisers weighing in at only 2% of bikes stolen.


Some more interesting motorcycle theft statistics:

  • One in six motorcycle theft victims have previously been a victim of some sort of theft.
  • The smaller the engine cc the higher the theft rate. This means scooters and kid’s bikes generally top of the list for thieves.
  • One in four motorcycles that are stolen are less than four years old.
  • Two in three motorcycles are stolen directly from the owners’ residence.
  • It is a shocking statistic to read but over half of motorcycles stolen in Australia are never recovered.

Top motorcycle theft statistics for 2014

On-road Motorbikes

  • Standard     3464
  • Scooter       1551
  • Sports        1043
  • Unknown     271
  • Cruiser        172
  • Touring        103
  • Trike            5

Off-road Motorbikes

  • Dirt              1430
  • ATV             412
  • Unknown      286
  • Mini             218

Motorcycle Brands

  1. Honda                   1591
  2. Yamaha                1526
  3. Suzuki                   735
  4. Kawasaki               702
  5. KTM                      469
  6. SYM                      207
  7. Harley Davidson     153
  8. Hyosung                141
  9. TGB                      135


What Can You Do To Protect Your Pride And Joy?

  • Ensure that you have the best comprehensive motorcycle insurance policy available.
  • If your motorbike comes with a steering lock, use it.
  • Wherever possible when parking in a public carpark, try to park near the guard or a CCTV camera.
  • If you park in the garage at home try parking your car behind your motorbike so you make it as difficult as possible for them to get it out.
  • Put a plain motorcycle cover over your bike. This not only keeps your motorbike in better condition but it can also slow down their attempt to steal your bike.
  • Have an immobiliser fitted or buy a GPS tracking system that can track your bike.
  • Avoid parking your motorbike in railway or shopping centre carparks for long periods of time.
  • Mark your motorbike in a unique way that will help authorities recognise it if it is ever found. Data Dot technology is available and may come in handy if the bike or parts of the bike are recovered.
  • If parking outside your house, consider motion sensor lighting to alert you of any movement. Not many thieves like having the spotlight shone on them during an attempted theft.
  • If you have to park publicly, try parking in a locked carpark.
  • If you have to park in the open, leave it where you can see it or where it is in plain public view.
  • Stay alert for suspicious vans or trucks driving around your area and write down the registration numbers of these vehicles. These are the types of vehicles that thieves generally use to transport stolen motorcycles without detection.
  • Be aware of who is around you when you get home, ensure that you have not been followed home on your regular route from work.

If you would like to know more about motorbike insurance or would like to get a quote on having your pride and joy insured with the best motorcycle insurance cover, please head to our website or call 1300 769 177 and speak with one of our accredited motorcycle insurance experts.

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