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Top 10 Most Expensive '05's to Insure

10 Most Expensive 2005 Cars to Insure

You've done it! Your youngest child has just graduated from college. No more tuition bills. Yea! Now you and your spouse can relax a little. Maybe take that vacation the two of you have been talking about. You're thinking it would be nice to have a new car also, perhaps a sleek convertible. All the better to take in the scenery on your vacation. You begin to plan for all your expenses. Living with four years of college tuition has helped you hone that skill to fine edge. You know exactly the car you want. You know what options you want with it and how much they'll cost. You figure your insurance will run about the same as for your current auto, maybe a little more because it will be a newer and nicer car.

Hold on there partner. Your insurance might be about the same…but it could be more, much more. Insurance companies based their premiums on two things, what they think about the probability that you will have an accident and how much they think it will cost them. Where you drive, how much you drive, and who's doing the driving are among the factors that affect the probability of an accident. What you drive is a major factor in estimating their cost.

The reality is that some autos cost more to repair than others, which comes as no surprise. Obviously, we would expect to pay more to repair a Jaguar than a Datsun. We might even be a little proud of it. Less obvious is the fact that some vehicles are also likely to cause more damage than others. Picture a Hummer (6,400 lbs.) and a Chevy Malibu (3,200 lbs.) in an intersection accident. Which one do you think is going to come off worse?

The Insurance Services Office (ISO), an organization that compiles loss data for the insurance industry, assigns vehicles to one of 27 classifications. Each classification reflects a variety of loss elements such as damageability, cost to repair, and the extent to which the vehicle may be a target for theft. The higher the classification, the higher the insurance premium for damage to the vehicle (your collision and comprehensive coverage). Not every insurance company uses the ISO classifications but the great majority do.

Top 10 Most Expensive 05's to Insure
1. Honda Civic
2. Chevrolet Cavalier
3. Nissan Altima
4. Ford Focus
5. GMC Sierra
6. Ford F-Series Pickup
7. Chevrolet Silverado
8. Dodge Ram
9. Toyota Camry
10. Honda Accord

The focus of this article is the most expensive autos to insure of the most popular vehicles sold in the U.S. We started with the 20 top selling vehicles according to Reuters Wire Service (11/3/04) and compared insurance rates in cities on both coasts and in the mid-west in arriving at our final list.

Our comparison of insurance rates was based on a 45 year-old single male with no driving violations or convictions and driving to work less than 3 miles one way. We used liability limits of $100,000 per person, $300,000 per accident, and $50,000 property damage. Comprehensive and collision premiums were determined using a $250 deductible. Obviously, you can expect to pay more for insurance in some localities than in others. For example, it may cost $3,100 to insure one of these vehicles in Philadelphia but only $700 to insure the same auto in Indianapolis. In addition, the particular model you purchase will influence your insurance premium (ISO has 10 different classifications for the Honda Civic, for example).

There are many autos that are more expensive to insure than those in our list, the Lamborghini Muriélago Roadster ($319,000), the Ferrari 612 ($260,000, the Rolls Royce Phantom ($328,000), or the Aston Martin DB9 ($155,000), for example. But, if you are seriously considering buying one of those, you probably aren't too concerned about the cost of your auto insurance.

This year, ISO also developed a new system for determining Liability, Personal Injury Protection (No-Fault states), and Medical Payments premiums. The new system applies credits or surcharges ranging from -20 percent to +25 percent based on the fact that one auto can cause more damage than another (our Hummer - Malibu example) and the fact that passengers are more likely to sustain injury in some autos than in others. Again, although the new program is available in all states, not all insurance companies have adopted it.

A number of factors may cause your individual premium to differ from the quotes we received. Certainly, if operators in your household have had accidents or traffic violations, your premium will be higher. If you are under 25 or over 50, your premium may be higher or lower. If your commute to work is further than the 3 miles we used, you can expect to pay around $60-70 more for your insurance but if you are comfortable with a $500 deductible on your collision and comprehensive coverages instead of $250, you might save $150. That means if you are loss-free for two years, your premium savings will have paid for the first time your have to use your deductible. Hopefully, that will be never, leaving you free to spend that money on other things. And, of course, insurance companies do compete for good insureds. It pays to look around before you buy.

That said, the range of premiums we found and the fact that many insurers have not yet adopted the new Liability, Medical Payments, and Personal Injury Protection rating plan described above gives insurance buyers a very clear message: NOW IS A GOOD TIME TO COMPARISON SHOP!

Happy hunting.