Got an expensive BMW motorcycle? Or a custom built Harley-Davidson? Are you worried they are targets for motorcycle thieves? Read on!

The least safe place to park your bike in 2012 was California, specifically Los Angeles. The state and county led the nation in motorcycle thefts for the year, and among the most popular brands for thieves to get their hands on we’re Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki.

Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki are Among Most Commonly Stolen Motorcycles

These three Japanese brands were the most commonly stolen bikes in the top locations last year, according to a study by the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB). The report also stated that overall thefts of motorcycles was slightly lower than 2011, despite the overall increase in motorcycle sales for the year.

Honda, representing 20% of all motorcycles stolen, led the pack. At 16% and 15%, respectively, Yamaha and Suzuki came in at a close second. Kawasaki represents 11% of stolen bikes and Harley-Davidson accounts for only 8% of the stolen motorcycle breakdown. By model, the 2007 Suzuki was the most-stolen motorcycle.

It’s more than a little interesting that Harley-Davidson, which accounts for more than 50% of all motorcycles sold in the United States every year, would be represented by such a relatively small percentage of motorcycles stolen.

Frank G. Scafidi, director of public affairs and spokesman at the NICB offered an unscientific yet sensible answer for the discrepancy: Harleys are expensive and because owners of high-end bikes usually keep them parked in locked garages it makes them harder to steal.

This might also explain why other high-end brands such as Ducati and BMW didn’t appear on the most-stolen list.

Unfortunately for bike owners, the NICB reports that the recovery rate for stolen motorcycles was well below the average 54% recovery rate for motor vehicles overall–only about 39%. As would be expected, most bikes were stolen during the summer months between June and September, with July and August ranking as the top two months for reported thefts.

With motorcycles being such easy targets for thieves, it’s hard to imagine these numbers ever improving significantly. So, during the warm months, Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki owners may want to be extra vigilant when leaving their rides unattended.

At Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys®, we know why you ride and we understand how important your bike is to you—that’s why we created BAM, our free roadside and legal assistance program. No matter where you ride, you can rest assured knowing you are backed by the nation’s largest network of Bikers Helping Bikers®. And—if you are ever injured in a motorcycle accident, you are represented by the experienced and skilled motorcycle accident personal injury lawyers at Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys®.

To learn more about BAM or our law firm, visit us on the web at or call us at 1-800-4-BIKERS. We Ride—We Care—We WIN!