A DORRIDGE father has warned fellow Land Rover Defender owners to be on their guard after brazen thieves pinched the bonnet to his vehicle over Christmas.
The dad-of-one had spent an afternoon shopping with his young daughter in Solihull on December 30 and had parked the sought-after model at Monkspath Hall Car Park in the town centre.
On his return the Customer Services Director was flabbergasted to spot that the bonnet, a desirable Puma ‘bulge’ style, had disappeared.
“There’s an epidemic up and down the country, particularly in Sheffield and Devon and Cornwall, where post 2007 Land Rovers are being targeted because of the new bonnet style which has a bump to accommodate the engine.
“My daughter was in tears because we had had a lovely afternoon and now it’s going to cost me around £700 to replace.”
A spokesperson for JLR said: “Land Rover is aware of a rise in the numbers of thefts of and from Defender vehicles, particularly in rural areas.
“The company has taken this issue very seriously and our engineering teams have been working in collaboration with insurance bodies and police forces to fully understand the attack risks facing Defender models. It is however important to remember that the current Defender line-up continues to meet the insurance industry requirements as tested and agreed with relevant insurance bodies.
“Land Rover recognises the part it plays in making it harder to steal its products and the company implemented a number of enhancements from 2011 Model Year to make it more difficult for thieves to circumvent the visual and audible warnings emitted when a vehicle is under attack. This change was rolled out in February 2011.”
Solihull Police have confirmed they are investigating the theft and have appealed for information.