The UK’s Bike Theft Hotspots REVEALED: Could YOUR Motorbike Be at Risk?

Are you the owner of a motorcycle? If so, we hope you’ve got sufficient security measures in place. In the UK between June 2022 and May 2023, there were 18,361 motorcycles registered as stolen to the DVLA by police. But where are the UK’s hotspots for bike theft? And which bike owners should be on high alert?

Using a FOI request to the DVLA, the vehicle finance specialists at Anglo Scottish Finance have found which bike models are most often registered as stolen, and which areas are home to the most stolen bikes.

 

Bike Model Number of stolen motorbikes
Yamaha GPD125-A NMAX 125 ABS 512
Honda WW 125-A 450
Honda WW 125 EXH2-H 306
Yamaha YBR 125 306
Honda NSC 110 E-E 293
Honda NSC 110 MPDH 235
Honda WW 125 EX2-F 227
Honda (No Model Code Recorded) 201
Honda WW 125 EX2-A 190
Yamaha YZF R125 171

 

Which bikes are stolen most often in the UK?

Astoundingly, the entire top 10 list of the most-stolen bike models in the UK comprises bikes from just two manufacturers – Yamaha and Honda. Two Japanese manufacturers which share a whole lot of racing pedigree, both Yamaha and Honda are known for building some of the finest bikes around.

 

Whilst Honda is renowned for its powerful, reliable engines, Yamaha motorcycles are known for their sharp handling, making them a cult favourite for many riders.

However, many of the bikes listed on the most-stolen rankings during this time are not the supercharged, modified or rare vehicles you might expect. In fact, all of the most-stolen bikes on this list are “commuter scooters” with engines of 125cc or under!

The Yamaha GPD125-A NMAX 125 ABS (it’s a bit of a mouthful, we know) tops the list of the most-stolen motorbikes in the UK between June 2022 and May 2023, with 512 models listed as stolen during that time!

 

Honda’s competitor, the WW 125-A, comes in second on the list, with 450 models stolen in the same 12-month window. Other variations of the WW 125 also appear in the top 10. The EX2-H variant was stolen 306 times, whilst the EX2-F and EX2-A models were stolen 227 and 190 times respectively.

With Honda accounting for seven of the top 10, it’s safe to say their bikes are incredibly popular amongst the UK’s bike thieves. Two variants of their 110cc model, the NSC 110 E-E and NSC 110 MPDH, also featured in the top 10.

 

Where are the UK’s hotspots for bike theft?

The bike theft dataset also included information on which UK cities have reported the highest number of stolen bikes over the last 12 months.

City Number of stolen motorbikes Population (2023) Stolen bikes per 100,000 people
Cambridge 157 158,434 99
Southampton 203 246,201 82
Bristol 482 617,280 78
Manchester 308 395,515 78
Nottingham 245 321,500 76
Leeds 292 455,123 64
Hull 170 314,018 54
Stoke-On-Trent 177 372,775 47
London 2,975 8,961,989 33
Birmingham 309 984,333 31

 

By pure numbers of reported motorbike theft, London of course topped the list. With 2,975 bikes reported stolen by London owners, the capital city dwarfs the rest of the cities in the top 10 combined! It was followed by Bristol (482), Birmingham (309), Manchester (308), and Leeds (64).

However, when the stolen bike figures are adjusted for each city’s size, the results are a little more surprising. In fact, Cambridge had the dubious honour of topping the list of bike theft, with 99 reported thefts per 100,000 people.

Southampton came in second place, with 82 thefts per 100,000 people in the city. Manchester and Bristol were tied with 78 thefts per 100,000 people, whilst Nottingham ranked fifth, with 76 thefts per 100,000 people.

Dan Reavley, Head of Vehicle Finance at Anglo Scottish Finance, comments: “Would-be thieves often see motorcycles as an easier theft than a car, leaving bike owners more susceptible to theft. Wherever you’re based, however, it’s worth investing in a little extra security for your motorbike. Peace of mind for your pride and joy is worth the money you’ll spend on security.”