For many people, buying a luxury or performance car like a Mazda MX-5, Porsche 911 or Tesla Model S is a lifelong dream.But what about auto insurance to protect your fancy new ride?
Before you buy a new car, you should consider that expensive cars usually mean more expensive car insurance. You might be able to afford the car itself, but the cost of insuring an expensive, luxury car might be too much for your budget.
Which cars are the most expensive to insure?
The most expensive cars to insure tend to be the cars that are the most expensive to repair or replace if you have a total loss. If your car is stolen or totaled in an accident, the insurance company will write you a check to replace it, and the bigger that check needs to be, the higher your insurance rates.
Insurance rates are also higher for cars based on rising repair costs. Twenty years ago a small fender bender likely didn’t do too much expensive damage, but many cars today have rearview cameras and other sensitive equipment that can be damaged in even the smallest of accidents, making them more expensive to repair. That said, there are some cars that are almost universally more expensive to insure.
1. Luxury cars
It may seem simple, but insuring a luxury car is expensive because buying a luxury car is expensive. The cost to replace a luxury car that has been stolen or totaled is much higher than the cost of replacing, say, a Ford Escape or a Toyota Corolla.
Luxury cars also usually have expensive parts, which means repairing a luxury car that has been damaged in an accident will cost quite a bit more than fixing your average family sedan.
For example, a Maserati Quattroporte has an MSRP of $96,000 for the Quattroporte GT (the base model) to $145,000 for the Quattroporte Trofeo. That means that repairing or replacing a Maserati Quattroporte is significantly more expensive than, say, a Honda Odyssey, which is why it will be so much more expensive to insure.
2. Electric vehicles
This is because the battery and other specialized equipment in an electric car is more expensive to repair than its gas-powered counterparts, although this may start to change as all-electric vehicles become more common.
Electric cars also tend to be more expensive than their gas-powered alternatives, which means the insurance company will have to pay more money to replace one due to a total loss.
For example, a Tesla Model S has an MSRP of $99,990. Not only does the higher price tag bring up the cost of insurance, but it may require a specific repair shop that specializes in electric vehicles, which makes it more expensive to repair in the event of an accident.
3. Sports cars
Sports cars, like McLaren 720S or Alpine A110, have the same problem as luxury and electric vehicles: a higher price tag generally comes with a higher insurance premium.
However, sports cars face another serious issue — they are designed for high speeds and accelerated performance. This means insurance companies have to take those designs into account when setting your rates, and the faster you are going when you are in an accident, the more damage will be done to your car.
That’s why it is so expensive to insure sports cars like the Mercedes AMG GT. With an MSRP of $92,500 and a twin-turbocharged 4.0L V8 engine producing 503 HP, the Mercedes AMG GT is considered a supercar, which is a high performance sports car that has limited availability. All of these features are factors in the high cost of insuring a Mercedes AMG GT.
Average car insurance rates by make and model
Insurance companies use many different factors to set your rates, including your age, your location, and your driving history. The make and model of your vehicle is just one of the factors that goes into how much you pay for car insurance.
Average annual cost
Jeep Grand Cherokee
Chevrolet Bolt EV
Tesla Model 3
Tesla Model Y
What makes a vehicle expensive to insure?
Insurance costs are based on repairing or replacing your vehicle in case of an accident. If it costs more to fix your car after an accident, you should expect to pay a higher premium.
It isn’t just about minor repairs. What happens if your car is stolen, flooded, or otherwise declared a total loss? The insurance company writes you a check for the value of your car (minus your deductible), which means a car that comes with a higher price tag will also be more expensive to insure.
Policygenius has analyzed car insurance rates provided by Quadrant Information Services for every ZIP code in all 50 states, plus Washington, D.C.
For full coverage policies, the following coverage limits were used:
Bodily injury liability: 50/100
Property damage liability: $50,000
Uninsured/underinsured motorist: 50/100
Comprehensive: $500 deductible
Collision: $500 deductible
In some cases, additional insurance coverage was added where required by the state or insurer.
Rates for overall average rate, rates by ZIP code, and cheapest companies determined using averages for single drivers age 30, 35, and 45.
Some carriers may be represented by affiliates or subsidiaries. Rates provided are a sample of insurance costs. Your actual quotes may differ.