Small cars likelier to be vandalised, says insurance firm

A burnt out Smart car in London
A burnt out Smart car in London
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Small cars such as Smart cars and Minis are most at risk from vandalism, new research has suggested.

More than one in every 100 Smart cars falls victim to vandalism every year, while Mini owners are the second highest at-risk group, with one claim for every thousand each year.

Alfa Romeos, BMWs and Mazdas round out the top five vehicles targeted by vandals.

The analysis, by Churchill Car Insurance on claims from 2013-2017, also revealed that the most frequent type (15%) of vehicle vandalism is cosmetic damage such as scratches.

This is followed by front bumper damage (12%) and front door (12%) damage.

Motorists have also been warned to take extra care of their vehicles during October, when the most claims for vandalism are made, with Halloween pranks being a potential factor for the increase.

Car insurance claims for vandalism in October rise by 8% compared with the annual average, while December is the quietest month for claims, when they fall by 12%.

Steve Barrett, head of Car Insurance at Churchill, said: "A moment of anger or mindlessness on the part of a vandal can cause victims long-lasting stress and, as our research shows, a large amount of money.

"It's extremely unfair, and while not all cases will result in a conviction, we strongly advise victims report vandalism to the police, even if the damage is only minor.

"If repairs aren't made to even small scratches and dents, the condition of the vehicle will deteriorate, which could significantly impact the resale value."