As if motorists aren’t already facing spiking new-vehicle prices and fuel costs, their car insurance premiums are likewise costing more than ever these days.
A while back we quoted a report that predicted, with more Americans returning to their daily commutes and road trips, car insurance premiums would increase by about 0.6% this year. That’s exactly what’s happening according to the annual lists of average insurance costs conducted by the website Insure.com.
Last year, for example, the Honda CR-V compact crossover SUV cost, on average, $1,285 annually to insure, while the latest figures peg the cost at $1,366. A Subaru Outback that commanded an average yearly premium of $1,330 in 2021 now demands $1,407 for the same coverage.
Auto insurance premiums are based largely on largely intractable variables like a motorist’s driving record, age, gender, marital status, and where he or she lives. One’s credit rating can often also affect rates. By those standards, a young, unmarried male driver having tickets and/or at-fault accidents and poor credit who resides in a big city will pay the most for coverage among all motorists.
But there is one actuarial component over which all motorists can control, and that’s the vehicle which he or she drives. By that yardstick it’s surprising that average rates haven’t been hiked by a higher percentage, with the average new-vehicle price currently standing at around $46,500 according to Kelley Blue Book, which is 13% higher than it was a year earlier.
In general, models that tend to be driven gently, have top safety ratings, are relatively inexpensive to purchase and repair, and are deemed to be a total loss at a lower cost threshold should they get into a wreck are the cheapest to cover. The least expensive model to insure for 2022, according to the website, is the Subaru Forester compact SUV in its 2.5I Wilderness trim, at an average $1,353 per year. We’re listing the 20 least costly to cover models for the current model year below.
On the other side of the proverbial coin, the vehicles that, on average, will cost the most to insure tend to be upscale rides that inherently cost a fortune to fix, as well as high-performance models that put as much as 600 horsepower (or more) to the pavement. We’ll cover that list in a separate post.
Insure.com bases average annual insurance costs on data from 3,000 separate models collected from the seven largest carriers, in 10 Zip Codes per state, based on a hypothetical single 40-year-old male who commutes 12 miles to work each day, with typical policy limits, a clean record and good credit. Needless to say, a driver’s premiums will vary, based upon the aforementioned factors.
One way to help minimize car insurance costs is to shop around among multiple carriers. Some insurance companies will charge more or less for drivers they deem to be at a higher risk of getting into a collision or having their vehicle stolen or otherwise damaged. At that, some companies may decline to cover certain vehicles and/or drivers altogether.
A driver can also fine-tune his or her coverage with an eye on the bottom line. Cutting liability coverage to the state required minimum is one way to save some cash, while another is to raise the deductibles for the comprehensive and collision-damage components, or drop it altogether if it’s for an older car that’s not worth much more than the higher deductible. Likewise, consider canceling or declining medical payments, rental reimbursement, and towing coverage.
And be sure to take advantage of every discount a given carrier is offering, which includes cars equipped with specific safety and anti-theft features, and for teens and senior citizens who’ve taken approved safe-driving courses. Premiums will also usually be lower for those who own multiple cars, who “bundle” vehicle and homeowner’s insurance with the same company, drive a minimal number of miles per year, pay premiums annually, and/or who set up automatic payments.
Finally, though some may find it to be a “Big Brother” type intrusion, many companies will assess lower or higher rates depending upon one’s actual driving habits, based on data collected from monitors plugged into a vehicle’s onboard diagnostics port.
That said, here are the 20 vehicles Insure.com’s research indicates will garner the lowest annual auto insurance rates, with applicable trim levels noted for each.
The Cheapest Cars To Insure For 2022:
- Subaru Forester 2.5I Wilderness: $1,353
- Hyundai Venue SE: $1,360
- Honda CR-V LX: $1,366
- Mazda CX-30 S: $1,379
- Toyota C-HR XLE: $1,384
- Toyota C-HR NightShade: $1,387
- Mazda CX-30 S Premium: $1,388
- Honda CR-V EX: $1,391
- Kia Seltos LX: $1,391
- Honda HR-V EX: $1,398
- Hyundai Venue SEL: $1,402
- Ford Transit Connect XL: $1,405
- Volkswagen Tiguan S: $1,406
- Mazda CX-5 S Select: $1,407
- Subaru Outback 2.5I: $1,407
- Honda HR-V Sport: $1,408
- Subaru Forester 2.5I Sport: $1,412
- Toyota C-HR Limited: $1,412
- Chrysler Voyager LX: $1,413
- Jeep Wrangler Willys Sport: $1,415
You can read the full report here.