Does a red car increase auto insurance?

Auto insurance companies don't ask for the color of your car. The top three factors that your rates are your, (1) age, (2) location, and (3) driving history.

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like and Safeco. He reviews content, ensuring that ex...

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Nov 9, 2021

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Things to Remember...

  • One of the most popular myths concerning auto insurance is that the color of your vehicle has an effect on your total insurance rates
  • While many people believe that red cars automatically carry higher insurance rates, the truth is that the insurance company doesn’t even ask for the color of your car when rating your policy or reviewing your application for coverage
  • When rating a vehicle, the insurance company considers the vehicle make, model, submodel, trim level, safety
    [box type=”shadow”]features, and aftermarket features to calculate the car’s premium
  • Your driving record can have a significant impact on your rates. If you have speeding tickets, the insurer can surcharge your rates for up to three years

When you’re buying a car, it’s important to pick a vehicle that has all of the features you want, and that is still pleasing to the eye. As a wise consumer, it’s best to set a budget before you go shopping at local dealer lots.

Not only should you look at how much it will cost to buy a car, but you should also consider how much it will cost to insure it.

Insurance costs vary from driver to driver and from car to car. Your rates are calculated by using your personal rating factors and determining how likely you are to have a loss.

While many different factors play a role in pricing, the color of your car isn’t a factor. Here’s what you need to know about the myth that red cars cost more to insure.

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Insurance Companies Don’t Ask You For the Color of Your Car

If you’ve been dying to own a cherry red car your entire life, do not let the thought of high insurance rates make you change your mind.

One of the biggest myths surrounding auto insurance is that you pay more for your coverage if you own a red car.

Insurance companies ask you for a lot of information, but the agent won’t ask you for your vehicle color because it is not used to rate your policy.


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What vehicle information does the company use to calculate your rates?

If you buy a car with a candy apple finish, the flashy color won’t affect your rates but the make and model will. Insurers use dozens of factors to determine which risk class an applicant falls into.

Many of these factors are related to the type of vehicle that you drive. Some of the factors that are used include:

  • Year, make, and model
  • Cost to repair
  • Garaging zip code of the vehicle
  • Anti-theft devices (passive, active, or GPS systems)
  • Annual mileage

What information can be found using the VIN?

When you request a quote, you might be shocked to find that the company doesn’t necessarily need a VIN to give you an estimate. Even though a VIN is not needed, having your VIN handy will ensure that you will get the most accurate car insurance quote possible. That’s because the VIN is a 17-digit number where every digit tells the insurer something about the car.

Here’s what the VIN can tell your insurer:

  • Position one –Nation of origin
  • Position two – Manufacturer
  • Position three – Vehicle Type
  • Positions four to nine – Model, Body Type, Restraint System, Transmission Type, and Engine Code
  • Positions ten to seventeen – Model Year, Manufacturing Plant, Production Sequence Number

Your Driving Record Affects Your Insurance Rates

Vehicle details and features aren’t the only things that impact your insurance rates. Your driving record can also have a huge impact on your premiums.

Insurance companies assign different surcharges for different types of driving infractions after you’ve been officially convicted in court. For example, a speeding ticket can come with a 15 percent surcharge.

Not only do you have to pay a surcharge for moving violations, but you also have to worry about losing Good Driver Discounts for having blemishes on your driving record.

If you’re under the impression that driving a red car will land you more tickets, think again. The statistics show that red cars don’t get ticketed more than vehicles in other colors.

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Other Factors That Affect Your Rates

Your driving record is important, but so are your driving habits. Even people who have clean driving records and accident histories can be seen as somewhat risky drivers based on their driving habits. Here are other important rating factors that help assign drivers into a risk classification:

  • Driving experience
  • How often you drive
  • Vehicle usage
  • Your age, gender, and marital status
  • Your credit

Before you buy any car, whether it’s red or green, make sure to price insurance costs. Using an online quote comparison tool can help you determine if you can afford to buy a specific car based on its features. Start shopping around for insurance coverage and find the perfect car. Just enter your zip code into our FREE comparison tool to get started!

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Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

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