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Car insurance groups

Learn how car insurance groups work

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What are car insurance groups?

Car insurance groups are one of the ways insurers work out the cost of your insurance policy.

Every car in the UK has an insurance group. In total there are 50 insurance groups for cars rated from 1 to 50, with 1 being the cheapest and 50 the most expensive.

How do car insurance groups work?

Car insurance groups are used as a baseline by insurers to help determine your car insurance price. The insurance group of a particular car shows how much a risk that kind of car might be. This could be down to:

  • Its engine size
  • The estimated cost of repairs
  • The value of the car
  • What standard safety and security features the car has

Generally, the lower the car group, the lower the cost of your insurance.

Other factors that also impact your insurance costs include:

  • Your age
  • No-claims bonus
  • Annual mileage
  • How you use your car

How many car insurance groups are there?

There are 50 car insurance groups, and insurers place cars into groups depending on their size, value, and the cost of repairs.

Cars in lower down groups, such as 1-10, are more likely to be affordable, safe cars that are cheap to repair.

Cars in the higher-up groups are expensive cars with bigger engines that have higher repair costs.

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How are car insurance groups decided?

The Group Rating Panel decides which group a car goes in. The panel is made up of members of the Association of British Insurers (ABI), Lloyds Market Association (LMA) and supported by the motor insurance repair research centre, Thatcham.

The Group Rating Panel considers the following when giving a car model an insurance group:

  • New car value acts as a guide to how much your car might cost to replace or repair. The more it costs, the higher the group
  • Repair costs including labour costs are calculated to see how much it costs to get your car fixed and back to normal
  • Safety features like autonomous emergency braking (AEB) lower the risk of an accident. The lower this risk, the lower the group
  • Car bumper compatibly is assessed against the rating panel’s criteria. If the structure meets what they look for, the car goes into a lower group
  • Performance ,looking at 0-60 mph acceleration time and top speed. Typically, the more powerful the car, the higher the group
  • Average repair time - longer repair times mean increased labour costs, which means more expensive insurance policies
  • Security features such as alarms and immobilisers show your car is less likely to be broken into, so should fall into a lower group

What insurance group is my car?

You can check which insurance group your car is in by visiting the Thatcham website. Here are some popular car models and which group** they fall into:

1-10 11-20 21-30 31-40 41-50
Citroen C1
Audi A3
Audi Q5
Lexus IS
Infiniti M
Vauxhall Corsa
Fiat 500
BMW 1 Series
Audi TT
Volkswagen Phaeton
Ford Ka
Honda Civic
Hyundai Sonata
BMW 5 Series
Audi R8
Audi A1
Kia Picanto
Land Rover Freelander
Ford Mondeo
Citroen C6
Volkswagen Polo
Mini Countryman
Mini Cooper S
Porsche Boxster
Volvo XC90

**This is not an exhaustive list. Some of the models within each group range will be allocated different groups depending on their exact specification. All details taken from Parkers.co.uk.

What are the cheapest cars to insure?

The cheapest car insurance groups are 1-10. So, if you’re looking for cheaper insurance costs, it might be better to look for a car from these groups. Some examples of cars in these lower groups include:

Insurance group** Car model
1
Skoda Citigo
2
Hyundai i10
3
Ford Ka
4
Volkswagen Up
5
Fiat Panda
6
Nissan Micra
7
Fiat 500
8
Citroen C3
9
Renault Captur
10
Dacia Sandero

**Information taken from Parkers.co.uk.

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What insurance group are electric cars in?

Electric cars are sorted in the same way as petrol and diesel cars. Every electric car will be in an insurance group from 1-50.

Popular electric cars are still viewed as being specialist by insurers. They’re typically placed in the highest insurance groups as they’re expensive to repair after a crash. And as they aren’t that common, replacement parts can be difficult to find.

For example, a Nissan Leaf sits in insurance groups 21-25, and a Kia Niro SUV is in groups 20-24. The Telsa Model 3, however, is in insurance groups 48-50.

How is car insurance calculated?

As well as the car you drive, there are several factors that impact how much you pay for your car insurance:

  • Age is a major consideration for car insurance prices. Younger drivers are seen as less experienced so are more likely to be involved in a road accident. Car insurance costs are usually higher for drivers under 25.
  • Driving history and any record of previous claims or driving convictions are likely to increase your price.
  • Occupation plays an important part - if your job is in an industry deemed risky, you’ll see higher premiums.
  • Location. If you live in a postcode with a higher crime rate, there's a great risk of you making a claim. This is reflected with higher insurance costs.
  • The type of coveryou choose. Despite comprehensive insurance offering the most cover, it’s often the cheapest.

Find out more about how car insurance is calculated.

How can I get cheaper car insurance?

There are a number of ways for you to get cheaper car insurance. To start with, buy a car in one of the lower insurance groups. Other things you can do are:

  • Add car security features
  • Increase your voluntary excess
  • Pay annually if you can
  • Get a telematics box or black box policy
  • Be accurate with your annual mileage
  • Build up a no claims bonus (NCB)
  • Pick the correct job title
  • Think about how you use your car, and update your class of use

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What our car insurance expert says

If you're a young-driver looking to keep your costs down, seriously think about the car you drive. A lower spec model with a smaller engine might not be flash, but it'll likely fall into a lower insurance group, which will cost you less to insure.

Louise Thomas - Car insurance, personal Finance, mortgage and life insurance expert signature

Louise Thomas

Car insurance expert

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