Sadly the trend in vehicle theft in many countries doesn’t look to be decreasing anytime soon, and worse still, high amongst the most desirable vehicles for the highly organised gangs that steal many of these vehicles to order and then ship them abroad, are Land Rover Defenders and the other kitted out 4×4 vehicles that we use and love.
The Defender is particularly vulnerable ironically due to the very reason most of us love it. With its major appeal being its iconic looks that date back several decades means that unfortunately, the basic security on the vehicle is equally dated, and unless you take extra measures to protect your vehicle it’ll be a sitting duck for any ‘stinkin’ car thief’ (nice 80’s lyric reference there – can you name the tune?).
So what can you do to stop your vehicle being the next one to be taking an unwanted trip abroad without you at the wheel?
At the most extreme, but one that seems to be becoming increasingly popular in areas with ongoing theft problems is driveway security, where a post is fitted into your driveway that’s simply pulled up out of the ground and locked in place blocking the pathway of the vehicle to ground. Although effective and a great visual deterrent when your vehicle’s at home, it’s of no use when away from your property.
Other in-vehicle visual deterrents that are worth looking into are a decent steering wheel lock and a pedal lock system. Simple and fairly quick to apply these are a decent visual deterrent and an added inconvenience to the thief which if determined may not stop them but will slow them down.
However, the one tool that almost guarantees you keeping hold of your vehicle, or at least getting it back should it be taken is a tracker/immobiliser unit. And studies back this up with a recent study done by the UK Government into car theft showing that the addition of an electronic immobiliser is the greatest influencer in reducing the chances of theft by anything between 25% – 50%.
Not only does fitting a tracker to your vehicle greatly increase your chances of getting it back should you be unlucky for it to be taken in the first place, but there’s also the added benefit that many insurance companies will lower your premium if fitted with a tracker, and lower it even further if fitted in combination with an immobiliser too.
One such product that not only provides both features, as well as several other really useful features, is the competitively priced product from DefenderDefender. Based in Gloucester in the UK but shipping to countries across Europe and beyond, this great piece of kit is easy and inexpensive to fit (taking around 30 mins for anyone proficient in vehicle electrics or your by local friendly mechanic).
We fitted the unit to one of our Turas vehicles several months ago to test it out and have been really impressed with the results. As with many other products on the market, it enables you to Geo-Fence your vehicle once it’s parked. Should the vehicle move outside of this area, either under its own power or being towed or trailered away you’ll be alerted via both the mobile App as well as with a phone call to your chosen number if set up to do so. If it is moving the real-time tracking feed enables you to track the vehicle with incredible accuracy with its position updated every 10 seconds. However, this is just the start of the DefenderDefender’s weaponry.
The simple to use App on your phone controls the device and shows you exactly where the vehicle is positioned as well as whether it is switched off, idling or actually running.
Another feature we really like is the vibration alert. Set up to a sensitivity level of your choice you’re again alerted if the vehicle is being tampered with. With many of us having extra kit attached to our vehicles such as roof top tents this is a great security feature to help protect these elements over and above the vehicle itself.
In the unlikely event thieves do manage to gain entry and start to drive your vehicle away the engine kill feature gives you ultimate piece of mind enabling you to simply press a single button on your phone App that instantly cuts the electrics in the vehicle and brings it to a halt.
The peace of mind afforded us since fitting this great system has been worth the investment alone, with further comfort given to me after speaking to the companies owner, Dan Knight, who explained that to date, 1% of all fitted units have been triggered by an attempted theft, however not one of these has been lost and every vehicle recovered – comfort indeed.
We use ours combined with a high-quality steering wheel lock to visually deter any would-be thief from choosing to have a go at our vehicle, safe in the knowledge that should they get in, by the time they’ve got past the steering lock the vibration alert will have already triggered and called our phone and we’ll have activated the ignition kill to stop it going anywhere and stop our vehicle becoming the next statistic.
Away from the fear of theft the system also lets you track every journey you’ve made that can be recalled through the App’s history to give you a mapped version of exactly where your vehicle has been – a lovely little feature to play back your more adventurous off-road adventures to see exactly where you went and the terrain covered.And don’t let the brand name make you non Land Rover Defender owners feel left out because this product can just as easily be fitted to any number of other vehicles enabling you too to enjoy the ultimate level of protection.
Don’t just take our word for it, go take a look yourself at www.defenderdefender.co.uk today and order yourself one before you regret not having done so. And there’s never been a better time to do so because until 30.4.20 we’re delighted to say as a reader of TURAS magazine you can benefit from an EXCLUSIVE 10% DISCOUNT. Simply quote ‘TURAS20’ when you place an order to take advantage of this great offer – you can thank us later!