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The numbers are in from June when it comes to car thefts in Minnesota, and the two makes of cars that are stolen the most are surprising.

It's not a surprise that parts of Minnesota, specifically the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, are experiencing an increase in crime. And vehicle theft has been one of those categories of crime that seems to be increasing the most. In fact, according to this Fox-9 story, the metro area has seen an 'epidemic' of vehicle thefts, as the Ramsey County Sheriff's Office called it. Car thefts have been 'exploding' since last December, the story said.

In fact, up in Minnesota's capital city of St. Paul, the numbers are telling. "St. Paul police said they've investigated 1,891 auto thefts in 2022, compared to 1,351 for the same time period in 2021," Fox 9 noted.

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But the cars that are stolen the most center around two specific brands: Hyundais and Kias. Which was a little surprising to me. I thought other, more expensive, higher-end brands might be targets of thieves, but I guess not. Just look at how many more Hyundais and Kias have been stolen this year, according to Fox 9:

St. Paul police have investigated 212 Hyundai thefts and 256 Kia thefts this year, compared to 31 Hyundai thefts and 18 Kia thefts in the same time period last year.

That's a whopping 1,300 percent increase in stolen Kias from last year and a 584 percent increase in stolen Hyundais compared to 2021!

So why are those two cars being stolen so much? The story notes that it's because of what it calls a 'manufacturing defect' that allows them to be stolen much more easily. The vehicles were made without engine immobilizers, an electronic security device that makes it more difficult to start a vehicle without a key, the story said.

While the theft epidemic appears to be limited to the metro area, the story said even here in Rochester and southeast Minnesota, owners of those two brands might want to invest in a vehicle alarm system or steering wheel lock and be sure to not leave the cars unlocked or running.

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