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Logo for the NMVTRC's Comprehensive Auto-theft Research System (CARS) service

Motor vehicle theft statistics.

The NMVTRC's CARS service collect details on every vehicle theft reported to Australian police. A range of interactive data tools and services are available at a national, state and local level.


CARS has been fully funded by the NMVTRC since September 1999. The NMVTRC’s significant investment provides a single, nationally consistent data source that enables easy and meaningful comparison across more than 40 data providers.

CARS is based in the South Australian Attorney General's Department and started as an initiative of the South Australian Vehicle Theft Reduction Committee. They recognised that timely, detailed and accurate information from a wide cross section of sources was needed by government and industry stakeholders to develop effective theft reduction strategies. Based on its South Australian success, CARS was contracted in 1999 by the NMVTRC to expand nationally.

CARS utilises modern data warehouse technology to produce nationally consistent data classification across all data sources. The result allows easy and meaningful comparison between stolen vehicle data, the registered fleet and insured vehicles.

CARS provides the evidence base that helps drive the NMVTRC's vehicle theft reforms and provides its services to all Australian stakeholders with an interest in vehicle crime.


CARS awards logos

In 2004, CARS won the International Association of Auto Theft Investigators (Australasian Branch) award for "Outstanding Contribution to the Reduction/ Prevention of Motor Vehicle Theft in Australasia".

In 2009, CARS was awarded a Certificate of Merit in the Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards. The awards reward good practice in the prevention or reduction of violence and other types of crimes in Australia.

Release of CARS data

Data sources


Detailed theft incident, recovery and vehicle details from every Australian State and Territory Police service. Data from January 2000 onwards - 1.76 million rows.

ACT Police Logo NSW Police Logo NT Police Logo QLD Police Logo SA Police Logo TAS Police Logo VIC Police Logo WA Police Logo


Six monthly extracts from every registration authority of registered vehicle details and garaged postcode. Data from June 2000 onwards - 618 million rows.

ACT Dept. of Territory and Municipal Services Logo and Link - External NSW Roads and Maritime Services Logo and Link - External NT Dept. of Transport Logo and Link - External QLD Department of Transport and Main Roads Logo and Link - External SA Dept. of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure Logo and Link - External TAS Dept. Infrastructure, Energy and Resources Logo and Link - External VICRoads Logo and Link - External WA Dept. of Transport Logo and Link - External


Policy and claim details from participating insurers. Data from July 2000 onwards - 404,146 rows.

AAMI Insurance Allianz Insurance Apia Insurance Bingle Insurance CIL Insurance GIO Insurance Insurance Australia Group Insurance My Ride Just Car Insurance Lumley Insurance NRMA Insurance RAA Insurance RACQ Insurance RACT Insurance RACV Insurance SGIC Insurance SGIO Insurance Shannons Insurance Suncorp Insurance TIO Insurance Vero Insurance Wesfarmers Insurance Zurich Insurance


VIN based data of every new PLC vehicle sold in Australia. FCAI data from January 1993 onwards - 23 million rows.VFACTS Logo and Link - External

IAG vehicle immobiliser classifications.Insurance Australia Group

Glass' Guide PLC vehicle value estimates.Glass's Information Services Logo and Link - External

ABS demographic and spatial data.Australian Bureau of Statistics Logo and Link - External

General tools

Theft watch

Theft watch

The NMVTRC's quarterly statistics based simple interactive tool of top level motor vehicle theft statistics for Australia and all states/territories based on the latest 12 months of data.

Open theft watch
Dashboard (public)

Dashboard (public)

Quickly visualise key national and state/territory statistics with interactive tables and drilldown charts. See current trends along with what is stolen, when and where.

Open dashboard (public)
Theft risk rating

Theft risk rating

What is the risk of your car being stolen? This simple five star rating shows which PLC vehicles manufactured from 1993 onwards, are most at risk of being stolen in Australia.

Open theft risk rating
Local theft profile

Local theft profile

Car security begins at home. Search for a locality and view a quick local theft profile to find out how many motor vehicles were stolen in your area in the past year.

Open local theft profile
Market segment profile

Market segment profile

Use this tool to explore Passenger/light commercial (PLC) market segments and discover Glass's Guide estimated vehicle values and top theft targets.

Open market segment profile
Motorcycle cluster map

Motorcycle cluster map

Interactive map of motorcycle theft suburb clusters across Australia. By understanding the theft risk in their local area, riders can take action to protect their motorcycle.

Open motorcycle cluster map
Age theft profile

Age theft profile

Use the play/pause button in this tool to see how PLC age profile of thefts and registrations in Australia and every state/territory has changed over the last 5 calendar years.

Open age theft profile

Stakeholder tools

Dashboard (restricted)

Dashboard (restricted)

Dashboards for stakeholders such as New South Wales Police enable customised, monthly interactive statistics to be delivered to key people across an organisation.

Open dashboard (restricted)
LGA mapper

LGA mapper

Stakeholders can interactively map by LGA across Australia with simple data selection, filtering and comparison. Downloadable two page theft profiles for every LGA are available.

Open lga mapper

Offline data cubes

Stakeholders can download an offline data cube for use with Excel. It has 25 Police variables from the year 2000 onwards. A registered vehicle summary is also available.

Open offline data cubes