The Cheapest Cars to Insure in 2021

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People want to shop smart when purchasing a new car. They consider their budget, the price of the vehicle, the mileage and fuel efficiency. But not everyone thinks of the premium they will have to pay to insure the vehicle. While it might seem like a good idea to take advantage of a great deal on a new vehicle, not all cars are cheap to insure. Bankrate pulled car insurance rates for the most popular car models of 2020 to determine the cheapest cars to insure.

Top 10 cars with the cheapest car insurance

While a cheaper car will not guarantee lower insurance premiums, there are affordable cars that are also affordable to insure. By comparing the top-selling models of 2020, Bankrate found the Subaru Outback to be the cheapest for minimum coverage at only $510 and $1,475 for full coverage. Close on its heels is the Honda CR-V at an annual premium of $527 for minimum coverage and $1,366 for comprehensive coverage. These sport utility vehicles have been a customer favorite for years due to their seating capacity and fuel efficiency.

Car Average Minimum Coverage Average Full Coverage
Subaru Outback $510 $1,475
Honda CR-V $527 $1,366
Toyota RAV4 $535 $1,451
Hyundai Tucson $544 $1,394
Toyota Highlander $547 $1,585
Ford F-150 $556 $1,432
Ram Pickup $558 $1,555
Jeep Wrangler $567 $1,462
Nissan Rogue $579 $1,501
Chevrolet Silverado $582 $1,517
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Cars to avoid for cheap insurance

While price isn’t everything, budget cars with high safety ratings and low claim filing rates usually offer the cheapest insurance premium. Expensive sports and luxury cars are costly to own and typically come with the highest annual premiums. A Honda CR-V will always be cheaper to own and insure than a Lamborghini or a Porsche.

It is best to avoid the following kinds of vehicles to save on auto insurance:

  • High-end luxury cars
  • Expensive compact cars
  • Cars with specialty parts
  • Vehicles with low safety ratings

How a car’s make and model impacts insurance rates

The vehicle’s price is only one of the several factors that determine how much it costs to insure. Besides driving record, age, ZIP code and credit score, the vehicle’s make and model are also taken into account when calculating the premium.

Insurers determine what premiums to charge on certain makes and models based on factors such as claim filing rate, repair costs and incidences of theft. If a certain model has had a high number of claims in the recent past, insurers tend to charge a higher premium for it, regardless of the vehicle’s price or the driving record of the insured. Some cheap vehicles have high repair costs, which can lead to heftier insurance premiums. On the flip side, some higher-priced cars might not cost as much to insure due to a favorable claims history, good safety ratings and low repair costs.

Some other attributes of a vehicle that can affect the premium are:

  • Age: The older the car, the cheaper it might be to insure compared to newer models.
  • Size: Bigger, heavier vehicles are capable of causing more damage on the road, leading to a higher insurance premium.
  • Trim level: Upgraded features in a car affect the purchase price and the cost of insurance.
  • Safety features: Better safety features in a vehicle minimize the risk of collision and theft and are often associated with lower insurance premiums.

Frequently asked questions

What is the average cost of car insurance?

The average cost of auto insurance in the United States is $1,738, but the price varies from one person to another, depending on location, ZIP code, credit score, driving record and type of car. It’s a good idea to compare quotes from multiple insurers offering the same coverage options to find the best value for your unique needs.

How do I lower my car insurance premium?

Since car insurance premiums depend on multiple factors related to driver and vehicle, there is no one way to lower the cost. Some good best practices for getting lower car insurance premiums include buying a cheaper car with good safety ratings, keeping an eye on your credit score and maintaining a good driving record. Speak with your provider or a licensed insurance professional to determine what factors might be driving your insurance rates up.

What are the best car insurance companies?

There is no one best car insurance company for everyone. It’s a good idea to shop around and compare providers, then speak with a licensed insurance professional before purchasing a policy.

Methodology

Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male driver with a cleaning driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:

  • $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $50,000 property damage liability per accident
  • $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
  • $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
  • $500 collision deductible
  • $500 comprehensive deductible

To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverages that meet each state’s requirements. Our sample driver commutes five days a week and drives 12,000 miles annually.

The vehicles analyzed are the 25 top-selling models in the U.S. in 2020, as reported by Kelley Blue Book.

These are sample rates and should be used for comparative purposes only. Your quotes may be different.

About the author


Cynthia Widmayer

Cynthia Widmayer

Cynthia Widmayer has over two years of experience as an insurance and personal finance writer. She covers home, car and life insurance products for Bankrate, the Simple Dollar, and Coverage.com, among others.