Question: Is it true that some sport utility vehicles cost more to insure than others?
Answer :

What you pay for auto insurance depends on quite a few variables, including your:

  • Sex
  • Age
  • Residence
  • Driving record
  • Level and type of coverage

As a result, a driver in his or her 20s who lives in the city will generally pay more than a middle-aged, suburban soccer mom for the same coverage on the same make of car. But that doesn't explain why one sport utility vehicle (SUV) could cost either one of these individuals more to insure than another, similar SUV.

In addition to the factors listed above, insurance companies consider statistical data available to them. By doing so, they can estimate how likely it is that a particular type of vehicle will be involved in an accident, vandalized, or stolen. They can also analyze their own and industrywide data concerning the average amounts of claims paid for different types of vehicles. To minimize their risk, insurance companies adjust their rates accordingly. So, the SUV on every thief's wish list is likely to cost you more to insure than the one even known felons will pass by. Similarly, the SUV known to cost the most to repair when it's involved in a fender bender will increase the premium you'll have to pay to insure against that potential loss.

The experiences that affect insurance rates can sometimes vary from company to company. If one company has paid more claims on a particular type of SUV than another company has, the first company's rates to insure that type of SUV might be higher than the second company's rates. As always, in your efforts to get the best deal you can, shop around and get quotes from several insurers.

Note: In some states it is the state, not the insurer, that decides how each vehicle is rated.