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If you're looking for the cars with the lowest insurance rates, you've come to the right place. To locate the best auto insurance rates, The Ascent has been tracking national averages and combing through a wide range of premium quotes, typically based on age, sex, and driving history. To help you find a policy that fits within your budget, we'll cover which cars are cheapest to insure, the types of cars people should avoid to keep premiums low, and how to shop for the right policy.
According to our research, the 10 cheapest cars to insure in 2021 are:
These makes and models represent some of the most popular vehicles and have the added bonus of being cars with the lowest insurance rates. That is likely due to their relatively low price point combined with loads of safety features. Here are our picks for the lowest car insurance rates by model:
With an annual premium of $1,324, the Mazda CX-3 Sport beats the national average rate of $2,388 by 45%. As an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) Top Safety Pick for 2021, the CX-3 includes standard features like rear cross-traffic alert, pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, and blind spot monitoring. These safety features coupled with a low MSRP (starting at $20,790) make the CX-3 the cheapest small SUV to insure.
With a starting MSRP of $25,350, the CR-V LX is one of the cheapest new cars to insure. The CR-V gets rave reviews for many reasons, including an impressive amount of cargo space and an average annual insurance premium of $1,333. Like all of our choices for cars with the lowest insurance rates, there are plenty of safety features. The CR-V comes with a multi-angle rearview camera, forward collision warning, collision mitigation braking system, lane keeping assist, road departure mitigation braking system, and lane departure warning.
The third least expensive vehicle to insure in 2021 is the Wrangler Sport S, coming in at $1,334 annually. While the Wrangler may be designed for sporty drivers, it's designed with safety in mind. In this model, Jeep includes features like forward collision warning, blind spot monitoring, rear cross path detection, adaptive cruise control, and automotive high-beam headlamps. And with an MSRP of $32,435 for the two-door model, it's less expensive than the average new vehicle. Factor in it also has a slower depreciation rate than most vehicles, you can see why the Jeep Wrangler Sport makes the list.
Another IIHS Top Safety Pick, the Outback carries an annual premium of $1,335. With safety features like front crash prevention, child seat anchors, lane departure prevention, and standard daytime running lights, the Subaru Outback is one of the safest vehicles in its class, a factor that comes into play when it's time to insure the car. Another factor is its price tag. At $30,095, it is a relatively inexpensive vehicle.
The Fiat 500X Pop lands a low annual rate of $1,336, primarily due to its price (from $25,490) and slate of safety features like stability control, airbags everywhere (including overhead and knee), anti-whiplash head restraints, seatbelt pretensioners that automatically tighten to put the driver in the optimal position during a collision, highly rated roof strength, and a security system that anticipates unwanted intrusions. Not only is it one of the cars with the lowest insurance rates, it's also a great choice for people on a budget who are looking for safety.
The only non-SUV on the Top 10 list, the Honda Odyssey LX carries an annual premium of $1,353, the best insurance rate for a minivan. In addition to front, side, and knee protection airbags, this van offers traction control, seatbelt pretensioners, and blind spot detection. With a price from $31,790, it's also a relative bargain to repair or replace.
Subaru provides plenty of options when it comes to the best cars with the lowest insurance rates. And with an annual average premium of $1,373, the Forester 2.51 is no exception. That's likely due to enhanced standard safety equipment, including a feature that monitors traffic movement and warns drivers when they're drifting out of the lane. There's also a pre-collision braking system that brings drivers to a total stop in an emergency, lane centering, adaptive and cruise control. And with a starting price of $28,845, the Forester 2.51 is an insurance company favorite.
Mazda's larger model SUV begins at the low price of $25,370, and can be insured for an annual rate of $1,374, likely because standard features include superior vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention, child seat anchors, lane departure prevention, blind spot detection, and daytime running lights.
With adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, full-speed forward collision warning with active braking, the annual insurance rate on Jeep's popular Renegade Sport is $1,374, making it one of the cheapest Jeep models to insure. With a starting price of $22,850, the Sport is also one of the least expensive Jeep models.
The last in our list of cars with the lowest insurance rates is the Honda HR-V LX. In addition to a low annual premium of $1,377, drivers get the peace of mind that comes with knowing Consumer Reports ranks this as one of the most reliable cars. With standard features like electronic stability control, brake assist, 4-wheel disk brakes, electronic stability and traction control, the HR-V LX has a low annual premium of $1,377. And with a starting MSRP of $21,220, it's a great choice for budget-minded buyers.
Despite being cheap, the cars with the lowest insurance rates have some impressive perks. That includes our pick for the cheapest car to insure.
The Mazda CX-3 Sport currently holds the top spot for the least expensive vehicle to insure. With an MSRP of $20,790 - $22,190, this subcompact SUV has great reviews when it comes to performance. Despite being one of the cars with the lowest insurance rates, it also provides an impressive list of standard safety features. This includes forward collision warning, night vision, automatic emergency braking, and pedestrian detection. And with an average monthly insurance rate of $110.33, it's a bargain.
Typically, the cheapest type of car to insure is one designed for dependable drivers and loaded with safety features.
Reliability plays a role in the cars with the lowest insurance rates. The data that goes into determining insurance premiums includes records of which model vehicles make the most claims. If someone drives a car with a history of being in more accidents, it will impact their average insurance cost per month, even if their driving record is spotless. It may not be fair to paint one driver with the same brush as someone less careful, but it's all about insurance companies trying to avoid big payouts.
Typically, these are the most expensive types of vehicles to insure:
When someone buys a car with a high MSRP, they're going to pay more to insure it. Insurers know that the more expensive a vehicle is, the higher the repair costs. For example, one of the most expensive cars to insure is the Mercedes-Benz AMG GT R with a base price of $165,600. Any car insurance company knows that repairing or replacing the vehicle will be expensive, and their car insurance premium will reflect that fact.
Cars with the lowest insurance rates generally don't come with a lot of horsepower. Insurance statistics illustrate that the more horsepower a vehicle has, the more likely the driver is to drive fast and have an accident. With a horsepower of 532, the Audi R8 has a top speed of 198.8 mph, one of the primary reasons it's the second most expensive car to insure.
However, there are exceptions to the rule. For example, the Ford Mustang GT is one of the cheapest sports cars to insure, thanks to its IIHS safety ratings. The Mazda MX-5 Miata is the very cheapest sports car to insure. Not only does it possess some of the best safety features, but it's also known for handling well on the road.
Thieves don't just steal cars that they can resell. They also steal models with parts that are in high demand. For example, the Ford F-Series truck -- the best-selling vehicle in the U.S. for more than four decades -- is also the most stolen vehicle in the country. The version that gets nicked most often is the 2006 F-series. So it's certainly not one of the cheapest used cars to insure.
The type of car someone drives plays a big role in how much car insurance you need and the premiums they will pay. While there are specific models people should avoid if they want inexpensive car insurance (like the Porsche Panamera GTS Turbo and Tesla Model X Performance), it helps to know the "types" of vehicles to stay away from. Here's a list of factors sure to drive insurance premiums skyward:
When you're watching your budget, you will undoubtedly ask yourself, "What is the cheapest car to insure?" It's a smart question because landing a great insurance rate leaves you money each month to cover other obligations.
One of the easiest ways to save money is to drive one of the cheapest cars to insure in 2021. The good news is that many of the cars with the lowest insurance rates are also attractive, have great reviews, and are fun to drive.
Two of the most expensive models to insure are the Mercedes-Benz AMG GT R and Audi R8. Both have large motors, high price tags and cost over $4,000 a year to insure.
It may be, particularly if it's older than 10 years and the driver can drop some coverage without risking their finances. If it's an old classic car with specialized parts, it could be more expensive to insure.
No, not unless it's custom paint job that would cost more to repair.
No, nine of the top 10 cheapest vehicles to insure in 2021 are SUVs.
Maine, Ohio, Wisconsin, Idaho, and Iowa have the lowest auto insurance rates in the country.
Stay away from expensive vehicles, muscle cars, and cars that are frequently stolen.
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