Catalytic converter theft is an epidemic in America. A study from the National Insurance Crime Bureau indicates that thefts increased by 325 percent between 2019 and 2020. Thieves are after the precious metals in these emissions-reducing devices. Just last month, feds busted a 21-person national theft ring and earlier this year, New York State announced a major crackdown as well.
For a variety of reasons, late-model Japanese cars and trucks are among the most frequent targets. There are a number of aftermarket guards on the market to prevent such thefts, and now, Toyota itself is offering one for the new Prius. It’s an aluminum piece made by Cat Shield and it’s offered as part of Toyota’s new Associated Accessories Products program, a line of 3rd-party products offered at Toyota dealers. The catalytic converter shield for the Prius costs $140, plus the cost of installation. Toyota dealers can fit the guard, though as installation requires no drilling, customers can install it themselves if they’re so inclined.
Other Honda Models Can Get One, Too
Cat Shield offers a number of other catalytic converter guards for popular Toyota models (plus the Honda Accord and Element), and the automaker confirmed to R&T that it’s offering shields for the Tundra, Sequoia, Tacoma, 4Runner, Corolla, and RAV4, with more to come.
Frankly, this seems like a no-brainer to us. A quick search of Toyota’s parts site shows that catalytic converters for the 2022 model year generally cost over $1000, and trucks like the Tundra need two at nearly $1500 apiece. That’s before installation and the headache of having your car out of commission while it’s fixed. Perhaps a resourceful and determined thief could cut through the shield, but they’d more likely just move on to an easier target. Ultimately, this is a good, cheap insurance policy.
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