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The Top 12 Most Stolen Boat Brands

There’s nothing quite like taking a trip across a lake or up a river on a boat. Spending the day on the water is a privilege boat owners pay good money for, and invest long hours into, but some individuals can’t be bothered to put in the effort.

Boat theft is becoming more and more common across the world, making owner awareness and security more important than ever. These are the top 12 brands most likely to be stolen, as collected by Boat U.S. Marine Insurance’s Seaworthy newsletter.

Sea Ray

Sea Ray is all about big, flashy and beautiful boats. With full-sized yachts numbering among its bestsellers, it’s no surprise that thieves are usually too intimidated to even attempt stealing these massive works of art. For this reason, Sea Ray has the lowest rate of theft on this list.

sea ray boat

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 2.25
 

Bayliner

In business since 1957, Bayliner boats are a staple of any dock, and several generations can often be seen lined up side-by-side, each still happily in use. The sheer familiarity of Bayliners might make them less exciting for joy-riders, hence earning them a surprisingly low spot on this list.

boat insurance

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 2.57

Chris Craft

Chris Craft boats have a retro design aesthetic that seamlessly integrates classical styling with modern technology. They are made for the tasteful and the distinguished, and their size makes them a less than optimal choice for criminals.

boat insurance providers

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 2.80
 

Four Winns

Four Winns understands the social aspect of boating. Most owners enjoy bringing friends and families out to spend a day or evening enjoying the sun and some cool water. Because of this, these boats are big enough to hold a whole party, and also deter all but the most reckless thieves.

boat insurance providers

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 3.06
 

Boston Whaler

A Boston Whaler goes by another name: The Unsinkable Legend. The company has more than earned that title over the years, with a wide variety of boats meant to suit any interested customer. Whether a family wants a yacht, a fishing vessel or a light skiff, Boston Whaler has a sturdy and reliable option available.

boston whaler boat insurance

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 3.36
 

Wellcraft

Wellcraft’s line of fishing boats can meet the needs of nearly any fisher. Wellcraft proves that a quick jaunt out to the middle of a lake or a journey into open ocean in a fishing vessel can be just as relaxing as an afternoon on a yacht.

wellcraft boat insurance providers

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 3.70
 

Regal

Another company with a long history, Regal has been producing some of the most luxurious boats on the market since 1960. What other companies sell as a mainstay are just the entry-level at Regal, which seeks to balance both power and comfort and usually succeeds admirably. Regal’s larger boats make its products less susceptible to theft than other brands.

regal boat insurance providers

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 4.92

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Chaparral

Chaparral is all about indulging in a bit of luxury while out on the water. Although it offers the typical 20 foot long sport boats, it is best well-known for its cruisers. These stylish boats aren’t meant to break speed records, but are perfect for a leisurely day out or an exciting party. Chaparral’s smaller boats are more friendly to the casual thief, but the cruisers are more valuable to organized crime networks.

chaparral boat insurance providers

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 5.22
 

Mako

Mako eschews the sportier type of boats in favor of reliable and comfortable fishing boats. It began over 45 years ago as a saltwater fishing company, but has since expanded to cover all types of fishing. Its offshore boats are as large as 28 feet long, big enough to bring in all but the heaviest fish. The inshore boats are more likely to be stolen, however, thanks to their smaller size and more general use.

mako boat insurance providers

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 7.00
 

Bombardier/Sea-Doo

Sea-Doo offers both jet skis and boats, in many different sizes and styles. Sea-Doo caters to all enthusiasts, whether they’re seeking something to slowly wind their way up a river or to tear up the choppy waves at the beach. The most popular Sea-Doo boats and watercraft, however, are geared toward speed and sports, making them flashy enough to catch any thief’s eye.

sea doo boat insurance providers

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 8.19
 

Kawasaki

Kawasaki features a line of sleek, aggressive jet skis that catch the eye and inspire the imagination. Available in zippy one-person or spacious three-person models, a Kawasaki jet ski is fast, fun and portable, which makes it a natural choice for thieves. The widespread name-recognition of the Kawasaki brand also makes them choice targets, as the company is most well-known for its sporty motorcycles and dirt-bikes.

kawasaki jet ski insurance

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 12.80
 

Yamaha

Yamaha has over 50 years of experience building boats, and it shows in their quality craftsmanship. With boats ranging from a compact 19-feet to a sporty 24, there’s something for everyone in the lineup. A Yamaha is powerful and efficient, and comes with that hint of luxury that appeals to both buyers and thieves alike. All of the added features are noticeable, and that combined with Yamaha’s reputation make these boats the most often stolen of all.

most stolen boats

Number of thefts per 10,000 boats: 15.30
 

Preventing Boat Theft

Of course, no boat is safe from the dangers of theft, even if its manufacturer isn’t on this list. A boat is tempting because it is usually unguarded, may contain valuables, and can be sold in whole or in part for a good deal of money. Boats that are around 20 ft long are most commonly stolen, being much easier to transport than larger yachts or sailboats. Likewise, boats sitting on a trailer can be wheeled off with little effort.

To prevent the theft of your own boat, follow some simple common sense rules to deter thieves. First, a boat should always be stored in a locked garage or facility, where a casual passerby won’t be tempted. Don’t leave it unattended on a public dock, and never leave the keys in the ignition. Take the time to identify that the boat is yours by adding some unique features that you could identify it by later. This could mean carving a string of numbers somewhere on the boat and then memorizing them, or making a rubbing of the HIN on your hull. Don’t keep unsecured electronics or other items on the boat, and especially not in plain sight. Consider getting an alarm system for added safety. Finally, make sure your boat is always insured to help recover any loss from thefts.

boat insurance

Whether a stolen boat is sold for parts or used as a smuggling vessel between nations, once it’s gone it can be nearly impossible to recover. Don’t rely on finding your boat once it’s been taken, and don’t assume that your boat is safe sitting out in sight of the street. With some proper consideration, you can protect your investment and spend more time enjoying summer days on the water.

A great way to protect your boat from thieves and other unseen problems your boat may run in to, make sure you acquire boat insurance for your watercraft. Just type in your ZIP code here and compare boat insurance quotes to protect your investment.

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