POSTED: Saturday, August 18, 2012 - 8:00am
UPDATED: Saturday, August 18, 2012 - 8:04am
NBC NATIONAL NEWS — One of most popular and easy-to-find cars in San Diego is a prime target for thieves.
Sergeant Steve Witte showed us just how simple it is, to steal this Honda Accord.
Sgt. Witte says thieves don't need a special key, or special tools, to steal those cars.
"And because they're so easy to steal, that's what everyone targets," says Witte.
Ironically, it's Honda's quality that makes their older model cars such an easy target.
They last so long, and get driven so much, that the key, and the tumblers inside the ignition, are worn down, and lose their distinctive shape.
"Key becomes worn, ignition becomes worn, you can pretty much take any Honda key and walk to any Honda and start that vehicle."
Witte says any pre-2005 Honda is an especially easy target, if the doors aren't locked.
But thieves can often use that same worn down key to open a locked door.
And these cars are a target, for other reason: Accords, Civics and other Hondas are so popular, there's a very lucrative black market for their parts, especially their engines.
Sgt Witte says says this popular anti-theft device, which locks your steering wheel, really works.
Because even if crook starts the engine, he can't move the car, unless he saws off the Club, or part of the steering wheel.
You can also install your own security system.
It sounds an alarm, and shuts off the starter, when a thief tampers with your car.
Honda fixed this problem, in 2000-5.
The company installed a computer chip inside its keys, that makes it much harder to steal the cars.
Every key has a unique code that lets it start only the car it's made for.
Use any other key, and the car will disable itself.