Average Insurance Rates by Car Model Types

Many factors affect how much you need to pay to insure a ride. However, there are three key ones and they are vehicle details, drivers and location. The manufacturer, configuration, age, price, safety ratings and past accident data will influence quotes. It is pointless to list every car that is in circulation here. What you need to know is that there is a way to estimate the likely figure and we will try to show it below. To simplify it, we will look at median insurance premiums by automobile model in widely accepted groups rather than complicating the issue and boring you with details.

Besides, every company would incorporate this categorization differently into their rate structure. Furthermore, you can always get quotes before buying an auto to know exactly how much you would need to pay if you go ahead and buy it. It is best to be prepared for what is coming. Just keep searching until all the questions are answered to your satisfaction.

Remember that savings aren’t just for today. You will be saving a lot of money over the life of the vehicle when you pay less for insurance.

Why Do Some Automobiles Cost More (or Less) to Insure?

You should consider likely estimates before you buy anything because it can surprise you. Also, companies charge varying rates for different car designs that you need to compare quotations. Here are the key automobile specifics that influence the cost of insurance.

  • Purchase Price — When you buy full coverage the carrier undertakes to pay the full value of the car if it is stolen or totaled. That is why more expensive automobiles would usually cost more.
  • Cost of Repairs — Luxury and sports modes are made with special materials, using sophisticated engineering that requires highly trained technicians and expensive parts to repair. This pushes up the repair bills when it needs to be fixed after an accident or other damages and that increases carriers’ outlay.
  • Safety Features — Some cars protect drivers and passengers better and don’t cause as much damage to vehicles they are collided with. This would mean that companies would need to pay less for medical payments and therefore can charge less. Furthermore, auto accident prevention technologies reduce accidents and claims.
  • Typical driver — Some vehicles are more expensive to cover because they attract the risk taking people. On the other hand, mums and dads, who are more careful as they transport their family around, normally choose minivans and sedans. This results in fewer accidents and cheaper insurance rating group for minivans.

Usually new autos have the latest safety features and discounts offered for being safer negate the additional premium you may need to pay for its higher price tag.

Typical Insurance Rates by Auto Model Types

Let’s see if we can demonstrate on a table how the above factors manifest. To show the premium gap as clearly as possible we took the cheapest to insure model type – Cheap Old Minivan – as our BASE (100%) and the rest is shown as the percentage of the Base. An average cost of full coverage car insurance for an old minivan is approximately $1,000 in the US.

It is worth pointing out that the table below should be seen as a rough guide. Every vehicle model is so much different from the next one even within the same brand and there are so many different brands that it would be pretty exhaustive and confusing to extend this list any further. Our purpose is to point out how vehicle types affect rates and help you estimate the premium based on vehicle PRICE and STYLE.

Table: Average Insurance Cost by Car Model Types: Cheapest to Most Expensive

Model Type
Price RangeAverage Annual
Premium (%)
Cheap Old Minivan (BASE)$5,000100%
Cheap Old Family Sedan$5,000105%
New Midrange Minivan$30,000120%
Compact SUVs$20,000120%
Subcompact Car$15,000125%
New Family Sedan$25,000130%
Cheap Old Large SUV$15,000130%
New Midrange Pickup Truck$30,000140%
New Midsize SUV$55,000150%
New Large SUV$75,000160%
New Sports Car$90,000190%

Sources: Nerdwallet

Now, let’s look at every one of them in detail to work out why a particular shape of vehicle is more economical than the others.

Remember that median policy expenditure changes depending on which state you live in. Also, your personal details and zip code will have to be added into the equation that can make the final figure far above or below the mean. For example, motorists in large cities generally pay more than in the countryside.

-> Minivans
Minivans are hardly the choice of automobile for joyriding or showing off. However, they are the favorite among drivers with families, who obey traffic rules, avoid speeding or taking any risk on the roads for the safety of their family. Minivan coverage is consistently the cheapest partly because of the people buying them. In addition, they are generally reasonably priced, more economical to replace parts and get repairs done. All these characteristics work towards reducing claim settlements and that in turn reduces rates. A typical cost of insuring a minivan is about $1,100 – $1,300 per annum in the US.

Usually safer cars are cheaper to insure. So, you would kill two birds with one stone when you buy a car with the latest and best safety features. You spend less on premiums and keep your family safe.

-> Sedans
A standard four-door family sedan is one of the most popular and affordable automobiles in the country. The parts are plentiful and most mechanics can fix them. Probably the main reason why sedans are affordable is the fact that they are very common cars. Underwriters have to make sure that they can offer low prices for sedan owners if they want to have any chance within this large segment of the market. In other words, you have a better chance of finding the carrier with the best rates when you have a popular car. Sedan probably has the widest variety of cars. Typical insurance for a sedan is about $1,100 – $1,500 depending on the manufacturer, shape, trim and purchase price.

-> Subcompact Cars
You may think that these are popular with teenagers because they are budget friendly and yet cute. However, senior drivers prefer subcompact cars too that improves its accident statistics and reduces the rating group. Their other mentioned characteristics also alleviate the burden.

-> Pickup Trucks
One thing that works against pickup trucks is its numbers. They may be useful for rural and farming communities but they are not the first choice in cities where having a second vehicle is a luxury most people cannot afford. Nevertheless, the policy would be economical because they are not expensive and not bought for speed. Again, there are a few choices and therefore its model will be influential in the final sum. Average premium for a pickup truck is about $1,300 – $1,600.

-> SUVs
Sport Utility Vehicles have a large spread of rates. Actually, several SUVs like Jeep Wrangler and Patriot are among the cheapest vehicles to insure. These affordable range SUVs are owned mostly by reliable middle-aged drivers and their solid structure protects them well in case of accidents. A policy for a compact SUV can be bought for about $1,100 – $1,300 on average.

On the other hand, larger and sporty luxury SUVs like Porsche Cayenne and BMW X5 can be really expensive especially if you don’t have clean records and you are still young. If you have a good record you can probably find affordable deals. Besides, buyers may not be fazed by a slightly higher figure considering how much they spend for it. Families prefer these as they are in between a minivan and a sports car. They are expensive and fast and therefore you should expect to pay $1600+ on average for a luxury SUV policy.

-> Luxury Automobiles
Higher price tag and expensive parts and repairs increase the rates for them. The more exotic is the auto, the more money carriers demand. There are several reasons for it. First of all, it is harder to find mechanics and parts when you need to repair them. Secondly, fewer companies are keen on them and reduced competition reflects on quotes.

-> Sports Cars
Usually the most expensive vehicles are high performance. They are not for every motorist as skill and experience is necessary to avoid accidents with a powerful automobile. They statistically cause a few speed related accidents and the damages tend to be large when they happen. On top of it, people who like speed buy these automobiles. There are a few good reasons for expensive premiums and they are mostly speed related.

Furthermore, They are built with delicate fiberglass like materials that cannot just be quickly repaired by changing the part. You can replace most parts including doors and bonnets quickly and moderately. This is usually not possible with special built sports cars. They are often foreign with limited part availability and expertise in the country. It is hard to talk about average figures since they are so much different from each other. You should expect to pay a minimum $2,000 to insure a moderate sports car with a good driving record.

-> Electric Vehicles
They are more expensive to purchase and repair costs are usually higher with them. Electric automobiles have batteries that can cost a lot of money to replace if they are involved in a collision. Also, they can speed pretty quickly that causes concerns among insurers, especially considering they are very quiet as well. So, you will need to pay a bit more to insure an electric car in comparison to similar gas operated models. This may not be detrimental considering how much you would save on gas.

Generally, the most affordable vehicles to insure are minivans and family sedans because safety conscious drivers have them. Also, they are built for the comfort of the whole family and not for speed. High performance sports cars are the most expensive to insure because they are built for speed and they are bought by people who like it fast.

Every motorist’s circumstances are different that leads to varying purchase decisions. Whatever your preferences, it is best to know what to expect so that you can prepare for it. as discussed above it is possible to estimate the outlay for covering most vehicles. Then, you either buy it or find a more favorable one. In any case, there are many ways of saving. The good news is that these solutions yield bigger dollar savings when the auto insurance spending is high.