Important auto insurance statistics
- According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), U.S. car insurance costs are on the rise, with a 5% increase in rates observed from 2017 to 2018.
- IBISWorld estimated that the auto insurance industry was worth $311 billion in 2019 alone.
- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) predicts that U.S. motor vehicle crashes in 2010 cost almost $1 trillion in losses.
- 2015 was the deadliest year since 2008, with over 35,000 Americans killed on the road, based on NHTSA findings.
- That same year, pedestrian and cyclist roadway deaths hit a two-decade high.
- Teen drivers are nearly three times as likely to get into a fatal car accident than older drivers, according to findings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
- Experts also estimate that a motor vehicle-related injury occurs every 10 seconds.
- The NHTSA estimates about 10 million or more crashes go unreported each year.
Auto insurance statistics 2021
Bankrate’s study of the average annual cost of auto insurance in the U.S. shows a rate of $1,674 per year for full coverage, accounting for about 2.44% of the average U.S. annual household income. Based on the report:
- If your credit score decreases, your premium can increase by $1,351 for an average annual premium of $3,025.
- A speeding ticket can increase your premium by $355 for a total average premium of $2,029 per year.
- If you are involved in a car crash, your insurance premium can increase by $731 for a total of $2,405 per year.
- A lapse in coverage can cost you $187 for an average annual premium of $1,861.
- A DUI conviction can increase your policy by $1,662 for a total of $3,336 per year.
- If you add a teen driver to your policy, you add an average of $1,883 to your policy for a total annual premium of $3,557.
Auto insurance is required for drivers in 49 states and Washington, D.C. New Hampshire is the only state without a compulsory insurance liability law. If a driver meets the minimum financial obligations in New Hampshire, then they may be able to drive without an active auto insurance policy.
Auto insurance claims statistics
Car insurance claims are commonly the result of several factors, as indicated by the III:
Risk factors in 2018 fatal crashes | Insurance Information Institute
|Risk factor||Number of fatal crashes||Percentage of fatal crashes|
|Speeding or racing||8,596||16.7%|
|Influence of alcohol, drugs, or medication||5,175||10.1%|
|Drowsy, asleep, fatigued, ill, or blacked out||1,221||2.4%|
|No reason reported||16,012||31.1%|
Here is an in-depth look at these factors and how they may impact drivers and the companies who insure them from a financial perspective.
- An alcohol-related crash is a fatal motor vehicle accident involving a driver with a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher.
- There were 10,497 people killed in 2016 from alcohol-impaired driving crashes.
- Of those fatal traffic crashes in 2016, 28% died as a result of alcohol-impaired accidents.
- According to the NHTSA, speed-related crashes cost a total of $40.4 billion each year.
- It also reports that there was a 4% increase in fatal speed-related accidents between 2015 and 2016, accounting for the loss of over 10,100 lives in 2016 alone.
- In 29% of 2013’s fatal crashes, speed was a contributing factor.
Running red lights
- Research from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) shows that drivers running red lights in 2019 resulted in more than 846 deaths per year and an estimated 143,000 injuries.
- More than half of those deaths are pedestrians, bicyclists, or the occupants of the other vehicles involved in a crash with a vehicle running a red light.
- Drowsy driving is to blame for more than 100,000 motor-vehicle crashes.
- It also causes about 71,000 non-fatal injuries and over 1,500 deaths annually.
- Experts estimate that drowsy driving costs the U.S. $12.5 billion.
- In a three-year study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, drowsy driving was involved in up to 9.5% of accidents.
- Worse, about 37% of drivers admit to falling asleep behind the wheel at least once.
- According to the NHTSA, 2,841 people died from distracted driving in 2018.
- That same year, 6,200 pedestrians were killed in a 28-year record high.
- In 2017, about 42% of high school students said they sent an email or text while driving.
- In 2016, distracted driving killed 3,450 people and resulted in 391,000 injuries.
The III analyzed ISO data to determine the average claim impact by type of auto insurance coverage:
- Bodily injury – $15,443
- Collision claim – $3,144
- Comprehensive claim – $1,621
- Property damage – $3,231
Furthermore, the Insurance Research Council (IRC) reports that 79% of all claimed economic losses in auto claims in 2017 went to cover a multitude of medical expenses.
On the bright side, data indicates the number of injuries is gradually declining over time.
Number of injuries from auto accidents | Insurance Research Council
Numbers like these raise the question of who is paying for all of these losses, especially when considering the issue from an insurance perspective. Data from the NHTSA suggests that it is not an even split.
Who pays for insurance claims? | NHTSA
|Percentage of all motor vehicle crash costs|
|Individual crash victims||26%|
|Third parties, charities, and health care providers||14%|
|State and local municipalities||3%|
With insurance providers covering the bulk of these expenses, U.S. drivers have seen insurance premiums slowly creep up in keeping with the ongoing costs associated with these accidents. This is evident with historical data from the III below, as well as a glimpse at rates from this year.
Average annual cost of auto insurance | Insurance Information Institute
|Year||Average cost||Percent change, year-to-year|
Today in 2021, the average cost of car insurance is $1,674 per year for full coverage, according to rate data from Quadrant Information Services.
Auto insurance statistics state by state
Where you live has a significant impact on what you will pay for car insurance. The table below shows average annual car insurance rates by state for full coverage.
Based on average annual rates, Maine and Ohio fall well below the national average. Comparatively, Florida, New York and Louisiana tend to see the highest rates.
Average annual full coverage rates by state | Bankrate.com
|State||Average annual cost|
|District of Columbia||$1,810|
Percentage of uninsured drivers by state
Insurance premiums can vary from state to state for several reasons, but one major factor that often contributes to auto insurance costs is the number of uninsured drivers. In fact, the IRC credits the economic downturn as a leading reason for uninsured drivers. The Financial Responsibility and Insurance Committee of the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators reports that 82% of uninsured drivers either cannot afford insurance or do not have a vehicle that is inoperable or in use.
An accident with an uninsured driver can be especially detrimental because of the potential unaffordability of out-of-pocket costs for repairs, injuries or damages, and yet, uninsured drivers are prevalent throughout the U.S.
According to the IRC, about one in eight drivers were uninsured in 2014. About 27% of Florida drivers were uninsured in 2015 according to the III, although the highest percentage is observed in Mississippi — nearly 30% of drivers in this state are uninsured.
2021 most expensive cities/states for auto insurance
Our 2021 Bankrate annual report shows that certain areas of the country still continue to face much more expensive premiums than other regions.
Of the costliest metropolitan areas, Miami has the highest premiums with an average annual premium of $3,143 per year. Detroit, Tampa, New York and Orlando also face above-average premiums.
Most expensive metropolitan areas | Bankrate.com
|Rank (out of 25)||Metro Area||Average annual premium|
2021 least expensive cities/states for auto insurance
Some cities are more affordable for the average cost of car insurance. Boston is the cheapest metropolitan area based on quoted premiums, but Seattle, Washington, D.C, San Francisco and Portland all have the cheapest car insurance rates when compared to the percentage of total income they represent.
Least expensive metropolitan areas | Bankrate.com
|Rank||Metro Area||Average annual premium|
Auto insurance industry statistics
Given various risk factors and average annual claim costs, you might wonder what the impact is to auto insurance providers. These statistics reflect the state of the auto insurance industry:
- The CDC reports that 2010 costs for medical care and productivity losses accounted for almost $100 billion (almost $500 for every licensed driver in the country).
- Between 2008 and 2017, insurance payments increased by 31% for bodily injury claims and 26% for personal injury protection (PIP) no-fault claims.
|Direct property and casualty insurers||467,724||460,038||466,170|
There are some car insurance companies that are more popular than others either by virtue of market share and availability, competitive rates or high customer satisfaction levels. Companies like State Farm, Berkshire Hathaway, and Progressive all represent the greatest market share, with Allstate and USAA in close pursuit, according to the III.
Largest auto insurance providers, by market share | Insurance Information Institute
|Rank||Company||Direct premiums written||Market share|
|1.||State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance||$40,878,781||16.1%|
|2.||Berkshire Hathaway Inc.||$34,892,004||13.8%|
|5.||USAA Insurance Group||$15,231,169||6.0%|
|7.||Farmers Insurance Group of Companies||$10,533,343||4.2%|
|8.||Nationwide Mutual Group||$6,245,588||2.5%|
|9.||American Family Insurance Group||$5,776,711||2.3%|
|10.||Travelers Companies Inc.||$4,903,033||1.9%|
Auto insurance statistics by age
Age has historically been one of the most significant factors that car insurance providers use to determine the cost of insurance. Research continues to show that age is a driving factor in many fatalities, losses and damages associated with motor vehicle accidents. Below are common factors associated with younger, less-experienced drivers:
- Teen drivers are three times more likely than older drivers to get into a fatal car accident. Factors include inexperience behind the wheel, distracted driving, lack of seatbelt use and risky behaviors behind the wheel.
- Handheld cell phone use is highest among drivers aged 16 to 24.
- Teen drivers typically face more expensive premiums to offset the higher risk.
- Insurance premiums usually begin to drop by age 25 for responsible drivers.
- Insurance prices tend to increase again by age 70 for senior drivers, who can be more prone to vehicle crashes than middle-aged drivers.
Auto insurance statistics by gender
Auto insurance premiums can also be affected by gender. Not all states are able to use your gender when calculating insurance rates, however. In states like California and Michigan, it is illegal for auto insurance companies to use your gender as a factor when determining your insurance rates.
However, research shows that gender can be a predictor of driver behavior.
- IIHS research shows that men tend to engage in riskier behaviors behind the wheel than women.
- Men are typically involved in more motor accidents than women.
- Accidents involving male drivers tend to be more serious than those accidents with female drivers.
- 2013 data shows that speeding was a factor in 35% of all fatal accidents involving male drivers between the ages of 15 to 25 years old and 21 to 24 years old.
Car insurance for teen drivers can be very expensive but even more so for male 16-year-old drivers who pay about $500 more than their female counterparts. Even as male drivers get older, they still marginally higher car insurance premiums than women, on average, as shown below.
Average annual full coverage premium by gender and age | Bankrate.com
To obtain affordable car insurance, experts recommend the best thing you can do is shop and compare quotes. Each car insurance company may have different coverage and discounts options for your policy that can save you quite a bit on your premium each month.