Want to save money on car insurance?  It’s simple, really.  Just buy a car that has a low history of claims.  The insurance companies track all kinds of data including, on average, how much they pay out on claims per type of vehicle.  If you have one with a history of high claims they will charge you more.

For years, you used to hear that the Camaro was the most stolen car in America. It led to General Motors/Chevrolet developing the first “key with a chip” in the ’90s. Vehicle Anti-Theft Systems have gone far beyond an electronic resister built into the key.

Car makers have added alarms, keypad entry, engine immobilizers that prevent hot-wiring, VIN-etched windows, and tracking services like GM’s OnStar or Ford’s Rescu, to mention a few innovations. There is a slew of aftermarket anti-theft accessories too, from hidden engine kill switches to steering column collars and steering wheel locks.

Yet with all these precautions, hundreds of thousands of cars are stolen every year in the United States. The Highway Loss Data Institute just released a list of the Top 10 Most Stolen Cars. I came across the list and photos at CNNMoney.com recently.

The car companies know these cars are coveted and valuable. They are loaded with all the latest anti-theft technology.

“That won’t stop a determined thief from loading a car on a flat-bed truck,” said Russ Rader, the institute’s spokesman.

Not only would any of these vehicles carry a hefty price tag at the dealership, they are going to cost you extra on your insurance premiums. Below, I’ve included the list of the Top 10 Most Stolen Cars, along with the average insurance payout per claim.

Insurance companies base their premiums on two things: The likelihood they’ll have to pay you, and what they expect to pay out if they DO have to pay you. So for any of these vehicles, it’s a double whammy. You will be paying a lot more for your insurance, even if you live in an area that feels safe and low-crime.

Higher Risk, Higher Premiums

Here’s the list of most stolen vehicles, with the Cadillac Escalade at No. 1. As you read this chart, I want you to keep in mind just one more figure … on average for all vehicle losses, insurance companies pay out $14 per passenger vehicle for theft claims in America. That means the Escalade costs the insurance companies 9 times the average cost in payouts. What do you think that does to the premiums they charge?!

Insurance Payouts on Theft Losses, 2007-09
Vehicle type Claim
Avg. loss
per claim
Cadillac Escalade luxury SUV 10.8 $11,934 $128
Ford F-250 crew 4WD (2008-09) very large pickup 9.7 $9,636 $91
Infiniti G37 2-door (2008-09) midsize luxury car 7.1 $10,324 $71
Dodge Charger HEMI large family car 7.1 $10,118 $69
Chevrolet Corvette Z06 midsize sports car 1.7 $41,229 $68
Hummer H2 4WD very large SUV 6.2 $10,324 $62
Nissan Pathfinder Armada large SUV 4.5 $12,458 $54
Chevrolet Avalanche 1500 very large SUV 7.4 $7,571 $54
Chevrolet Silverado 1500 crew large pickup 8.0 $6,814 $53
GMC Yukon large SUV 5.7 $9,499 $52

Some people get a kick out of driving a car that’s coveted by other people. They catch people glancing at it, get asked about it and get to describe all its great features. And an advanced vehicle, with great safety features, may save you some money on your premiums for reducing the chance of serious injuries in an accident. Overall, however, there are vehicles which are safe, not showy, and a better choice if you want to save money on your car insurance.

My colleague, personal injury attorney Jim Reed wrote a great book, “Learn the Five Secrets to Buying Auto Insurance in NY”, which is full of tips and advice that will help youi choose your auto insurance. You can order it free from our firm by clicking on the link.

Thanks for reading.

ZiffLaw Attorney, Esq.
NY and PA Injury and Accident Attorney
The Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William Street
Elmira, NY 14901
Phone: (607)733-8866
Fax: (607)732-6062
Email: info@zifflaw.com