toronto car theft

Here's where the most cars are stolen in Toronto

It's a nightmare no car owner wants to imagine: you return to your parking spot only to find your car missing, with no idea where to search first. 

This nightmare has unfortunately become a reality for many car owners across the city, as auto thefts have already surpassed records with over two months still left in the year. 

According to the Toronto Police Service Public Safety Data Portal, the city saw 6,572 auto thefts in 2021 alone. This total is considerably higher than the average auto thefts from the 2014-2020 period, in which average auto thefts by year were 4,552. 

The last time auto thefts were below the annual average was back in 2017. 

A new interactive map by Transparent Canada reveals the top neighbourhoods where auto thefts are most prevalent in the city. The information is based on the City of Toronto's published data. 

toronto car theft

Toronto auto thefts by neighbourhood in 2021. Photo Credit: Transparent Canada 

Out of 140 neighbourhoods, the top 10 with the highest total auto thefts in 2021 were:

  • Humber-Clairville (489)
  • Downsview-Roding-CFB (176)
  • Islington-City Centre West (176)
  • York University Heights (172)
  • Humber Summit (136)
  • Rouge (114)
  • Willowdale East (114)
  • Woburn (107)
  • Glenfield-Jane Heights (105)
  • Bedford Park-Nortown (104)

The top 10 neighbourhoods with the lowest total auto thefts in 2021 were:

  • Blake-Jones (5)
  • Cabbagetown-South St. James Town (5)
  • Little Portugal (7)
  • Playter Estates-Danforth (8)
  • Caledonia-Fairbank (8)
  • Regent Park (9)
  • Woodbine-Lumsden (9)
  • Ionview (10)
  • Palmerston-Little Italy (10)
  • Broadview North (10)

The Toronto Police also revealed the totals for auto theft locations, with 506 occurring in commercial settings, 2,307 at a house, 219 at an apartment, 7 in educational, 11 in transit, 3,257 outside, and 265 categorized as "other." 

toronto car theft

Auto thefts by premise type in Toronto in 2021, from the Toronto Police Service's Public Safety Data Portal

Totals for 2022 have already surpassed 2021 numbers, with year-to-date auto theft offences already at 7,117 at the time of writing. According to Toronto Police, auto thefts account for over 20 per cent of the major crimes committed in Toronto in 2022.

toronto car theft

Major crime indicators by type in Toronto, year-to-date in 2022, from the Toronto Police Service's Public Safety Data Portal

New vehicles with keyless fobs are being specifically targeted during this heightened wave of car thefts, with thieves using sophisticated devices such as radio frequency amplifiers to capture fob signals from inside the house and extending it to the car. 

Other criminals have attached Apple AirTags to hard-to-see places on high-end vehicles for later location and theft. 

Toronto Police have advised the public to avoid leaving keyloss fobs near the front door overnight, and to park in a garage whenever possible. 

Lead photo by


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