You know who shares your expensive taste in luxury cars? Car thieves, that's who.
And if the new report from the National Insurance Crime Bureau, or NICB, is any indication, your auto insurance company may be less excited than you are about your recent purchase of a Mercedes-Benz, especially if you live in car-crazy California.
There were 4,384 luxury vehicles stolen nationwide from 2009 through 2012, according to the NICB. Thieves preferred the compact luxury class, with 2,150 thefts, compared to the midsize class, with 1,734 thefts, and the high-dollar premium class, with 500 thefts.
When the bureau drilled deep into its theft data for luxury class vehicles, it found that thieves preferred the Mercedes-Benz C Class, which topped the most-likely-to-disappear list with 485 thefts, edging the BMW 3 Series, with 471 vehicles stolen. Mercedes' E Class (381 thefts) and S Class (163) models also made the paradise-lost list, as did BMW's 5 Series (256) and 7 Series (126), as well as the Infinity G Series (405) and M Series (124), Cadillac's CTS (326) and Acura's TL Series (150).
Most populous state has most thefts
California led the nation, with 1,063 luxury car thefts reported, followed by Florida, with 674, and New Jersey, with 453. If you want to keep your Benz safe, you'd be advised to set your GPS to South Dakota or Wyoming, which reported just one luxury-vehicle theft each.
As for recovery, the high-end premium luxury rides were twice as likely to remain at-large, with 34.4 percent of these models unrecovered, compared to 14.3 percent of compact models and 13.5 percent of midsize thefts. Nationally, 713 stolen luxury vehicles, or 16.3 percent of the nationwide total, remain missing in action -- or more likely, in inaction.
These are vehicles that are more likely to have been targeted by sophisticated organized theft rings, which dismantle stolen vehicles for parts, VIN-switch them to resell to unsuspecting buyers, or export them to other countries, says the NICB.
Everyone with auto insurance pays a price for the criminal deeds of car thieves. To anonymously report a stolen vehicle, you can contact the NICB toll-free at 800-TEL-NICB (800-835-6422), text the keyword “fraud” to TIP411 (847411) or go online at nicb.org, where you can fill in a stolen-vehicle form and download the free NICB fraud tips app to your Android or iPhone.
Follow me on Twitter: @omnisaurus
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Jay MacDonald is a Bankrate contributing editor and co-author of "Future Millionaires' Guidebook," an e-book by Bankrate editors and reporters.