September '17

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32 THE SHOP SEPTEMBER 2017 32 THE SHOP SEPTEMBER 2017 TECHNOLOGY & ELECTRONICS T here is no greater sinking feeling for an automobile enthusiast than to come out to a parking space where you know you parked your car... and find it empty. You can imagine not only the dismay of the customer, but also the loss of all the hard work your shop put into the build. Although it is always easier to do something the second time around, I think we can all agree that replicating a build because of theft is not what we want to do. We would rather achieve greater heights on the next project. Unfortunately, custom vehicles— especially those wearing expensive wheels—are prime targets for theft. Overall, vehicle theft is down from its peak in 1991, thanks to the built-in security key fobs integrated into most car and truck ignition systems. Total vehicle theft is one part of the equa- tion, and encrypted key fobs do help. But how about protecting the expensive contents within the ride, such as audio and infotainment electronics? A good security system can help thwart even hardened criminals. A well-designed security system should be mandatory for any build your shop is proud of—this will help keep it in the hands of the rightful owner. HOT TO TROT According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the number of U.S. motor vehicle thefts rose 3.1 percent from 2014 to 2015, following a 1.9 percent drop in 2014 over 2013. In 2015, the value of stolen motor vehicles was more than $4.9 billion, according to reports. The average value of a motor vehicle reported stolen in 2015 was $7,001. The nationwide rate of motor vehicle thefts was 220.2 per 100,000 people. Thanks to coded key fobs, vehicle thefts have been trending downward in the decades since they peaked at nearly 2 million in 1991. However, there has been a slight uptick in the past two years, not reflected in the last set of government statistics. According to the Insurance Infor- Sharp rides deserve the best security systems. By Brett Solomon

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