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Many factors can affect your car insurance premiums, but the type of car you drive is one of the most influential; some vehicles cost more to insure than others.

For example, if you drive an expensive vehicle or one that’s at an increased risk of theft, you’ll pay more for auto insurance. But driving a car with high-quality safety equipment could help you qualify for lower insurance premiums.[1]

What is the cheapest car model to insure?

If you’re buying a new vehicle, it’s a good idea to know how different cars could affect your insurance premiums. But buying a less-expensive car doesn’t necessarily lead to cheaper car insurance.

Your auto insurance premiums are influenced by a variety of factors, including the make and model of the car, your age, your driving record, and even your gender.[1] While a cheaper car may cost less to insure than a more expensive one, other factors could still result in a higher insurance premium.

The following common vehicles have some of the cheapest insurance costs, according to Insurify data. All the cars outlined in this table are crossover vehicles or SUVs, which combine the features of traditional passenger cars with those of off-road vehicles. In addition, all these vehicles have good safety features.

For instance, the Subaru Outback and Forester models have top-rated safety features that may contribute to their lower insurance costs.[2]

Vehicle ModelAverage Monthly Quote
Subaru Outback$185
Dodge Grand Caravan$187
Subaru Forester$189
Chevrolet Captiva$194
Mazda CX-7$200
Fiat 500$203
Toyota Highlander$205
Honda Pilot$205
Chevrolet Tahoe$206
Honda Fit$207

How much does it cost to insure an SUV?

A sport utility vehicle (SUV) combines the features of a traditional passenger sedan with a light truck. SUVs typically have higher ground clearance, a sturdy frame, and four-wheel drive, which improves traction on rough terrains. SUVs also tend to have more room and can accommodate more passengers than traditional cars.

On average, it costs $225 a month to insure an SUV, though the exact cost will vary depending on the make and model. The following table outlines the average monthly costs for the five most popular SUVs, according to Kelley Blue Book.[3]

Vehicle ModelAverage Monthly Quote
Toyota RAV4$227
Honda CR-V$211
Tesla Model Y$395
Jeep Grand Cherokee$234
Toyota Highlander$205

How much does it cost to insure a sedan?

A sedan is a passenger car that usually comes with four doors and a separate trunk compartment. They come with a three-box design — a front that houses the engine bay, a middle section that houses the passenger compartment, and a rear that houses the trunk.

On average, a sedan costs $271 per month to insure. Listed below are the average monthly costs for insuring the five most popular sedans.[4]

Vehicle ModelAverage Monthly Quote
Toyota Camry$257
Honda Civic$277
Toyota Corolla$281
Honda Accord$252
Nissan Altima$292

How much does it cost to insure a pickup truck?

Pickup trucks are incredibly popular in the U.S. and account for roughly 20% of all car sales.[5] Pickup trucks cost an average of $226 per month to insure. Here are the average monthly costs for the five most popular pickup truck models.[6]

Vehicle ModelAverage Monthly Quote
Ford F-Series$210
Chevrolet Silverado$233
Ram Pickup$201
GMC Sierra$229
Toyota Tacoma$228

How much does it cost to insure a sports car?

A sports car is a passenger car that’s designed for high-performance driving. These cars usually come with powerful engines and are smaller and lighter than other vehicles.

Because the focus of a sports car is on speed and agility, these cars are often considered luxury vehicles and are the most expensive to insure. On average, sports cars cost $305 per month to insure. It costs significantly more money to insure a sports car than one of the 10 cheapest vehicles listed in the previous tables.

Here are the average monthly costs to insure some of the most popular sports cars, according to Carvana.

Vehicle ModelAverage Monthly Quote
Ford Mustang$288
Dodge Challenger$354
Chevrolet Camaro$310
Chevrolet Corvette$250
Hyundai Veloster$268

What is the cheapest car make to insure?

Buicks are the cheapest cars to insure, with Fiats coming in at a close second, according to Insurify data. Both cars come with advanced safety features that can help reduce the likelihood of accidents.

In addition, both vehicles are the least-expensive cars to repair. The following table outlines the 10 cheapest vehicle makes to insure.

Car MakeAverage Monthly Quote
Buick$207
Fiat$212
Subaru$213
Volvo$213
Ford$227
Chevrolet$231
Jeep$233
Chrysler$234
Mazda$243
Toyota$244

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How does your vehicle affect your car insurance?

Your choice of vehicle has a major effect on how much you pay for car insurance. Pricey vehicles are often more expensive to repair or replace, which can drive up the cost of your insurance. In addition, if your vehicle is associated with a high likelihood of accidents, you’ll pay more to insure it.

“Generally speaking, the more expensive a car is to repair or replace, the more expensive full coverage will be for the car,” explains Jesse Cunningham, licensed agent and owner of Bauple, an independent insurance brokerage in Maryland.

“Cars with safety and anti-theft features frequently cost less to insure because those features decrease the financial risk to the insurance company.”

The vehicle you choose can help lower your insurance premiums. Choosing a car with advanced safety features and a low theft rate can help decrease your insurance rates. But your choice of a vehicle alone won’t guarantee cheap car insurance, since plenty of other factors affect your rates.

What other factors affect car insurance rates?

While the type of vehicle you drive plays a large role in how much you pay for car insurance, it’s not the only thing insurance companies consider. Here are some other factors influencing your car insurance rates:

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Driving record

The better your driving record is, the less you’ll pay for auto insurance. If you have a history of accidents, traffic violations, speeding tickets, or DUIs, this will cause your rates to increase.

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Usage

The more time you spend on the road, the more at risk you are of being in an auto accident. So drivers who log high mileage will pay more for car insurance, while low-mileage drivers may have lower insurance rates.

car in carage

Location

The area you live in can also affect your insurance premiums. For example, you can expect to pay more if you live in an urban area with higher traffic and crime rates.

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Age

Age plays a significant factor in how much you pay for auto insurance. Older, more experienced drivers will pay less for insurance, while teen drivers will typically be the most expensive age group to insure.

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Gender

Statistically, women get in fewer accidents and receive fewer DUIs than men. When women do get into accidents, they tend to be less serious than accidents involving men. So women usually pay less for car insurance than men.

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Credit

When you apply for auto insurance, the insurance company will look at your credit report. If you have a history of poor credit, this can raise your insurance premiums, depending on your state.

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Coverage level

The amount of coverage you choose and the deductibles you set will also affect your insurance rates. Higher coverage levels and lower deductibles typically result in higher insurance costs.[1]

Tips for picking a cheaper car to insure

Since your vehicle type affects how much you’ll pay for auto insurance, choosing a cheaper car to insure can help you cut down on these costs. Here are four ways you can choose a car that’s less expensive to insure.

Choose a car with a high safety rating

Insurance companies prefer cars with higher safety ratings since certain safety features prevent crashes and lower the number of insurance claims, according to Cunningham. Robust safety features protect drivers and passengers and reduce the severity of injuries.

To find a car with a high safety rating, look for vehicles that earned high scores in crash tests. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conduct crash tests to assess vehicle safety. Cars that score well are well-designed and equipped to protect both the driver and passengers in a crash.

You can also read reviews from trusted sources to learn about the safety of different cars. You may also consider speaking with a trusted mechanic or car safety expert to ask for their opinions on the safety of different cars.

Avoid certain types of cars

If you want to pay less for insurance, then it’s a good idea to avoid certain vehicle types. For instance, sports cars cost the most to insure due to their high theft rate and because they’re usually more expensive to replace or repair.

And sports cars come with a high-performance engine and other features to make the car faster and more agile, which insurance companies see as more of a risk. Avoiding sports cars and choosing a more economical vehicle can help you save on insurance costs.[7]

Cunningham also recommends avoiding luxury vehicles if you’re trying to save on insurance. “Expensive cars, like exotic, sports, or luxury vehicles, typically cost the most to insure,” he says.

He says some people may want to avoid electric vehicles as well. “Electric cars also have higher repair costs, so they typically cost more to insure than their fuel-burning counterparts.”

Don’t choose a car that’s vulnerable to theft

Some vehicles are more vulnerable to theft than others, and choosing one of these cars will lead to higher insurance premiums. Generally, thieves target certain vehicles for two reasons: because they’re worth a lot of money or because they provide fast and easy access.

For instance, luxury vehicles and sports cars tend to be worth more, which is why car thieves target them. But Kias and Hyundais are often targeted by thieves as well, according to the IIHS.[8]

Experts speculate the boom in Kia and Hyundai thefts is because certain trim levels don’t have electronic immobilizers, which are devices that prevent thieves from breaking in and bypassing the ignition. Rates of car theft took a sharp downturn in models that added immobilizers, but brands like Hyundai and Kia lagged behind this trend.[8]

Compare insurance costs

If you’re considering buying a car in the coming year, it’s a good idea to get insurance quotes for several different models before you buy. This will help you understand the average costs for insuring each type of vehicle. You can use a quote-comparison tool to make this process simpler and receive multiple quotes in one place.

Cheapest cars to insure FAQs

Buying a car is a big decision, and you want to choose a vehicle that fits your needs and hopefully leads to lower insurance premiums. Here are answers to some additional questions about finding the cheapest car to insure.

  • What insurance is the cheapest for cars?

    Auto-Owners, Mile Auto, and Erie are the three cheapest car insurance providers, according to Insurify data. However, quotes vary depending on your driving history and situation. That’s why it’s important to shop around for quotes from multiple providers.

  • Are newer or older cars cheaper to insure?

    In general, newer cars tend to be more expensive to insure than older cars because they’re worth more and cost more to repair or replace. And older cars are less likely to be a target for theft, which also lowers their risk factor. But if older cars lack certain safety features, you could pay more for insurance.

  • Do smaller cars have cheaper insurance?

    Not necessarily. Insurify research shows that larger vehicles like SUVs, minivans, and hatchbacks cost less to insure. Insurance professional Jesse Cunningham agrees that smaller vehicles don’t necessarily cost less to insure.

    “Minivans like the Chrysler Pacifica and small SUVs like the Ford Bronco are commonly among the most affordable cars to insure,” he says. “We also find Subaru Foresters and Outbacks among the cheapest to insure.”

  • Is insurance cheaper on a car or SUV?

    SUVs cost an average of $225 per month to insure, while sedans cost an average of $271 per month to insure, according to Insurify data. The five cheapest SUVs to insure all cost less per month than the five cheapest sedans.

    That could be because SUVs have higher safety profiles than sedans. However, insurance for specific SUV models may vary in price, depending on the features that come with the car.

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Sources

  1. III. "What determines the price of an auto insurance policy?." Accessed February 10, 2023
  2. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. "2022 Subaru Outback." Accessed February 10, 2023
  3. Kelley Blue Book. "25 Most Popular SUVs in 2022." Accessed February 10, 2023
  4. Kelley Blue Book. "25 Most Popular Sedans." Accessed February 10, 2023
  5. CBS News. "America's love affair with pickup trucks." Accessed February 10, 2023
  6. Kelley Blue Book. "10 Most Popular Trucks." Accessed February 10, 2023
  7. III. "8 questions to ask before buying auto insurance." Accessed February 10, 2023
  8. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. "Hyundais, Kias are easy targets amid boom in vehicle thefts." Accessed February 10, 2023
Jamie Johnson
Jamie Johnson

Jamie Johnson is a Kansas City-based personal finance writer whose work has been featured on several of the top finance and business sites in the country, including Insider, Credit Karma, Bankrate, Rocket Mortgage, Fox Business, Quicken Loans, and The Balance. For the past six years, she's dedicated more than 10,000 hours of research and writing to more than 2,000 articles about personal finance topics.