Top 10 Vehicles Targeted For Catalytic Converter Theft

Catalytic Converter theft

Why Your Car Might Be at Risk and How to Defend It

Did you know that a single catalytic converter can contain metals more valuable than gold? Among the list of top 10 cars most at risk for catalytic converter theft, you’ll find popular models like the Ford F-series and the Toyota Prius. Discover why these cars are targeted and how you can keep yours safe. Dive into this article to arm yourself with knowledge and fight back against this growing problem. Don’t let your car be the next target!

Key Takeaways

  • Ford F-series, Honda Accord, Toyota Prius, Honda CR-V, Ford Explorer, and Ford Econoline/E-Series are commonly targeted vehicles for catalytic converter theft.
  • Catalytic converter theft leads to increased emissions and reduced engine performance, and it is considered a felony in many jurisdictions.
  • Prevention measures such as aftermarket solutions like cages and marking identifiers, parking in well-lit areas, using anti-theft devices, etching the vehicle identification number (VIN) on the converter, and installing catalytic converter shields can help prevent theft.
  • If catalytic converter theft occurs, steps to take include filing a police report and contacting insurance.
  • The cost of a new OEM catalytic converter ranges from $511.74 to $3,365.72 before labor costs.

Catalytic converter theft facts

Quick Facts

Common causes of catalytic converter theft
  • Easy accessibility due to the converter’s location underneath the vehicle
  • Lack of proper security measures
  • High demand and value of precious metals like platinum, palladium, and rhodium
Impact on vehicle performance
  • Loss of engine power and decreased fuel efficiency
  • Increased emissions and potential damage to the exhaust system
Legal consequences of catalytic converter theft
  • Considered a felony in many jurisdictions, leading to hefty fines and imprisonment
Steps to take if your catalytic converter is stolen
  • File a police report and provide any available evidence
  • Contact your insurance company to report the theft and initiate a claim
  • Replace the stolen catalytic converter with a new one from a reputable source
How insurance coverage applies to catalytic converter theft
  • Check your policy to determine if theft is covered
  • Ensure you have comprehensive coverage, as it typically covers theft-related incidents
  • Pay attention to deductibles and coverage limits to understand your financial responsibility in case of theft

Ford F-Series

Ford F-150 Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $682.80 – $1,084.73

Ford F-150 Catalytic Converter Theft

The Ford F-series trucks have catalytic converters that are relatively easier to access due to their height. This makes them a notable target for theft. Additionally, their popularity means there’s a large number on the roads, increasing the instances of theft. Their components also hold good resale value in the black market.


Honda Accord

Honda Accord Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $1,891.08 to $2,703.60

Honda Accord Catalytic Converter Theft

The Honda Accord is one of the most commonly stolen vehicles for catalytic converter theft in the U.S. This sedan’s consistent demand for replacement parts makes stolen items lucrative for thieves. The Accord’s vast consumer base means more cars are vulnerable. It’s reported that certain models of the Accord have converters with higher amounts of precious metals, making them especially attractive.


Toyota Prius

Toyota Prius Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $886.86 to $1,648.37

Toyota Prius Catalytic Converter Theft


The Toyota Prius, known for its hybrid technology, has a catalytic converter that’s often in better condition due to reduced emissions. This makes it a desirable target for thieves. Additionally, older models of the Prius have been especially prone to these thefts. The converter’s prolonged lifespan, thanks to the hybrid system, ensures it retains value over time.


Honda CR-V

Honda CR-V Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $713.87 to $1,019.47

Honda CR-V Catalytic Converter Theft

The Honda CR-V has seen a rise in catalytic converter thefts in recent years. Given its popularity as a compact SUV, there’s a significant number on the roads, making it a frequent target. Thieves are drawn to the CR-V’s converter because of its easily accessible position. Certain CR-V models also contain a higher concentration of precious metals in their converters.


Ford Explorer

Ford Explorer Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $607.20 to $970.80

Ford Explorer Catalytic Converter Theft in Chicago

The Ford Explorer, a well-known SUV, is another vehicle that thieves target for its catalytic converter. Its design allows for relatively easy access to the part. The Explorer’s widespread use across the U.S. has led to increased theft occurrences. Additionally, its converter components fetch a good price in the black market.


Ford Econoline/E-Series

Ford Econoline Van Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $1,499.20 to $3,365.72

Ford Econoline Van Catalytic Converter Theft in Chicago

The Ford Econoline or E-Series vans, commonly used for commercial purposes, are at risk due to their height and easy underbody access. These vans are frequently found in urban areas, providing ample opportunities for theft. Their catalytic converters are known to have a sturdy build, making them valuable for resale. The sheer number of E-Series vans in service means a higher incidence rate of theft.


Chevrolet Equinox

Chevrolet Equinox Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $819.41 to $1,162

Chevy Equinox Catalytic Converter Theft in Chicago

The Chevrolet Equinox, a popular compact SUV, has become a prime target for catalytic converter theft. Its positioning and design make the converter easily accessible to thieves. The Equinox’s popularity ensures a continuous demand for replacement parts. Stolen converters from this model often find quick buyers in the underground market.


Chevrolet Silverado

Chevrolet Silverado Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $799.95 to $1,643.75

Chevy Silverado Catalytic Converter Theft in Chicago

The Chevrolet Silverado, a widely-used pickup truck, faces frequent thefts of its catalytic converter. The truck’s height offers easier access to the undercarriage. Given the Silverado’s status as a best-seller, many are vulnerable to theft. Its converters are also known to have a substantial resale value.


Toyota Tacoma

Toyota Tacoma Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $1,200.01 to $1,648.37

Toyota Tacoma Catalytic Converter Theft in Chicago

The Toyota Tacoma’s mid-size build doesn’t deter thieves from targeting its catalytic converter. Its popularity and reputation have led to a higher number of theft cases. The converter in the Tacoma is positioned in a way that makes it relatively easy to remove. The high demand for Tacoma replacement parts ensures stolen converters are valuable.


Chevrolet Cruze

Chevrolet Cruze Catalytic Converter Cost (OEM) $511.74 to $1,122.22

Chevy Cruze Catalytic Converter Theft in Chicago

The Chevrolet Cruze, a commonly seen sedan, is not exempt from catalytic converter thefts. Despite its compact size, thieves find its converter worth the effort. The widespread use of the Cruze makes it a regular target. The converters from this model are known to hold good value, making them attractive for theft.

OEM Catalytic Converter Cost Overview


Make/ Model OEM Cost Range
Ford F-150 $682.80 – $1,084.73
Honda Accord $1,891.08 to $2,703.60
Toyota Prius $886.86 to $1,648.37
Honda CR-V $713.87 to $1,019.47
Ford Explorer $607.20 to $970.80
Ford Econoline Van $1,499.20 to $3,365.72
Chevrolet Equinox $819.41 to $1,162
Chevrolet Silverado $799.95 to $1,643.75
Toyota Tacoma $1,200.01 to $1,648.37
Chevrolet Cruze $511.74 to $1,122.22


tips to prevent catalytic converter theft

6 Tips to Prevent Catalytic Converter Theft

  1. Park in Well-Lit Areas: Thieves often target vehicles parked in dark, secluded areas. Ensure you park in well-lit locations or in a secure garage.
  2. Install Security Cameras: If possible, install security cameras that cover the area where you park your vehicle.
  3. Use Anti-Theft Devices: There are specific devices available that can be attached to the converter, making it harder to remove.
  4. Engrave Your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN): Engraving the VIN on the catalytic converter can deter thieves and help in identifying if it gets stolen.
  5. Check Your Car Alarm: Ensure your car alarm is set to trigger with vibrations as thieves might cause the vehicle to shake when trying to remove the converter.
  6. Stay Informed: Be aware of any thefts reported in your local area and adjust your precautions accordingly.

It is also advisable to check your insurance coverage for catalytic converter theft. Some policies may provide coverage for such incidents, which can help alleviate the financial burden. Another preventive measure is to consider aftermarket catalytic converter options. These alternatives often have additional security features that make them less attractive to thieves. By taking these precautions, you can reduce the risk of catalytic converter theft and protect your vehicle.

  • What Is a Catalytic Converter and Why Is It Valuable?

    A catalytic converter is a valuable component in your vehicle’s exhaust system. It helps reduce harmful emissions and plays a crucial role in environmental impact. Its theft can increase air pollution, leading to legal consequences and affecting global markets.

  • How Can I Tell if My Catalytic Converter Has Been Stolen?

    If your catalytic converter has been stolen, you’ll notice a loud, obnoxious noise when starting your vehicle. To protect it, park in well-lit areas, etch your VIN on it, and report theft to the police. Consequences include costly repairs and insurance may not cover it.

  • Are There Any Aftermarket Products Available to Prevent Catalytic Converter Theft?

    Aftermarket solutions exist to prevent catalytic converter theft. These products can be easily installed and are cost-effective. However, their effectiveness as deterrents may vary. Alternative security measures should also be considered for added protection.

  • What Should I Do if My Catalytic Converter Is Stolen?

    If your catalytic converter is stolen, first, don’t panic. Start by contacting your insurance provider to check if theft is covered. Then, report the theft to the police and seek professional assistance for a replacement. Finally, consider taking preventive measures to avoid future thefts.

  • Are Certain Areas or Neighborhoods More Prone to Catalytic Converter Theft?

    Neighborhoods affected by catalytic converter thefts tend to have higher crime rates. Common targets include vehicles with higher clearance and easy access. Prevention tips include parking in well-lit areas or using security devices. The increasing trend has prompted law enforcement measures.