Russian Lada thief foiled by trio of breakdowns

Tyler Heatley

Sadly, car thefts are on the increase with people’s most treasured four-wheeled possessions being pilfered in the night. A recent study found the Mercedes-Benz C-Class is currently the most desired amongst thieves in the UK, but in Russia it would appear criminals are more patriotic.

In this particular case, their taste for Russian-made metal was to their detriment as a thief broke down in all three Ladas he attempted to steal.

More on Lada

* Bangernomics: Cheap Lada Riva did me proud
* Save a Lada!
* Ladas for sale on AutoClassics

Like something out of a pantomime, a 22 year-old car thief attempted to steal a trio of Ladas, only for every single one to break down in the process. Between 11th and 15th September he tried to get away with a pair of Lada 2106 and a Lada 1500 by picking their locks and hot-wiring the engine. His attempts worked, albeit extremely briefly.

Now apprehended, his nighttime activities have him in front of the Ministry of Internal Affairs on charges of car theft. It’s reportedly not his first offence either, with repeated household thefts to his name.

The cars in question were developed in the Soviet era of Russia with each having close connections with Fiat. The Lada 1500, or VAZ-2103 as it was known in Russia, was a joint venture between Fiat and VAZ. It is the sister car of the Fiat 124 Special and was built under licence with a few modifications for its new Eastern market.

The Lada 2106 was another VAZ constructed car that remained in serial production for a mammoth 30 years. It was a development of the Lada 1500 with a greater focus being put on comfort. With a 0-62mph of 16 seconds, it’s questionable if the thief would have got away even it the car didn’t conk-out.

With the thief behind bars, Lada owners in Russia can rest a little easier.