Q

Does car color affect insurance?

A

In short, no. This is a common myth, but insurance companies do not factor car color into auto policy rates.

Kara McGinley

By

Kara McGinley

Kara McGinley

Property and Casualty Insurance Expert

Kara McGinley is an insurance editor at Policygenius, specializing in home, auto, and renters insurance. She's been writing about insurance since 2019, and her work and insights have been referenced in Kiplinger and WRAL.com.

Published March 25, 2020|3 min read

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Key Takeaways

  • It does not matter if your car is red, yellow, black, or silver, the color of your car will not affect the price of your car insurance

  • That said, if you modify your car by getting a custom paint job and want to add coverage to insure it, then the modifications will affect the price of your auto policy

  • Although car color does not affect car insurance, things like the make and model of your car will, as will your driving record, age, credit score, ZIP code, and other factors

There are many factors that contribute to the price of your car insurance rates, like your age, address and driving history — but does car color matter?

Auto insurance is financial protection in case you cause damage or injury with your car or in case your car is damaged or stolen. How much coverage you need will depend on what state you live in and your own personal circumstances. When it comes to rates, insurers will factor in some details about your vehicle, for example, some insurance companies will offer discounts if the car you are insuring is newer than three years old.

That said, there’s a common myth amongst drivers and vehicle owners that the color of your car will raise your car insurance rates. This is false. It doesn’t matter if your car is red, black, or blue your insurance company will not factor this into your policy rates.

In this article:

Car color and auto insurance myth

The truth is, some cars are more expensive to insure than others, but this is based on things like the age, make and model of the vehicle. When it comes to the myths surrounding car insurance, one of the most popular ones is that your car color can raise your policy’s rates. For example, many people believe red cars result in more expensive policies than more neutral car colors, like silver. This simply is not the case.

When you are insuring your car, most insurance companies will ask for information about your vehicle. Many times, this does not involve listing your car’s color.

Below are some common vehicle details that you will need to provide to your insurance company.

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Custom paint jobs and auto insurance rates

The one time your car color will affect your car insurance is if you modify the paint, like if you get a custom paint job on your car, and want to include your custom paint job in your insurance coverage. When it comes to car insurance, your insurance company will consider your car to be in the same condition that you bought in its original form, so if you get a customized paint job added to your vehicle and want it to be covered in case of damage, you should notify your insurer.

Many insurance companies offer a special coverage for aftermarket modifications, sometimes called “custom parts and equipment coverage.” This will extend your car insurance coverage to repair or replace your customizations if they’re damaged in an accident. This includes custom paint jobs as well as other custom parts like wheels, lights or sound systems you may have added.

Auto insurance policies are made up of different types of coverage and each coverage type offers a different kind of protection.

Coverage TypeWhat It Does
Bodily injury liabilityThe part of your liability coverage that pays for medical bills if you've injured someone in an accident
Property damage liabilityThe other part of liability coverage, covers the cost of property damage you've caused in an accident
Personal injury protectionCovers medical expenses for you or your passengers after an accident
Uninsured/underinsured motoristCovers the costs if you're in an accident caused by a driver with little or no car insurance
ComprehensiveCovers damage to your car that happens when you're not driving
CollisionCovers damage to your car after a car accident, no matter who was at fault

The more coverage you add to your car insurance policy the more expensive your premium will be, but it also means protection from more potential threats.

How are car insurance rates calculated?

Although car color does not affect the price of car insurance, there are a lot of other factors that do. Car insurance premiums are calculated based on lots of information about you and your vehicle, that an insurer then uses to estimate how likely you are to get in an accident and have to file an insurance claim. Those include:

  • How much coverage you need

  • Your driving record

  • Credit score

  • Driving habits (such as your yearly mileage)

  • Your age

  • Which state you live in

  • Your deductible amounts

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