Ford Authority

Ford Econoline Ranked Sixth For Catalytic Converter Thefts

Automotive theft, in general, has been on the rise for years now, but it isn’t just entire vehicles that thieves are making off with. Rather, those same criminals are targeting pricey parts that are easier to steal and sell, such as exterior lighting, tailgates, wheels, and of course, catalytic converters, which contain a number of pricey precious metals inside. In terms of the most popular vehicles targeted by catalytic converter thieves in the past year, the Ford F-Series tops that particular list, while the Ford Explorer landed in fifth place, according to new data from Carfax, but the Ford Econoline was right behind that latter model in the sixth spot.

Unlike the F-Series, which was also the top vehicle on this particular list last year and the Explorer, which rocketed up nine spots year-over-year, the Ford Econoline actually dropped two places in the rankings after finishing in fourth place for catalytic converter thefts in 2021. Regardless, the van remains a popular target among thieves looking to cash in on that particular part.

Overall, catalytic converter theft continues to grow with each passing year, totaling around 153,000 in 2022, versus 52,000 the year prior. And since Carfax acquired this data using nothing more than service records indicating that a catalytic converter had been replaced – taking into account whether that happened because of a defect or recall, or just old age – it’s possible that the actual figure is far higher.

With the cost of new catalytic converters ranging between $2,000-$3,000, this is obviously an expensive problem for vehicle owners, but thieves are more interested in melting down the precious metals found in these anti-pollution devices – platinum, palladium, and rhodium – which can sell for between $970 and upwards of $10,000 an ounce, as is the case with rhodium. Otherwise, simply reselling them can net thieves anywhere from $25 to $300, or up to $1,400 in some cases.

We’ll have more insights like this to share soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for more Ford Econoline news and ongoing Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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  1. Mike says...

    Well, you have to be good at something I guess?
    Well done Ford.


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