The Lowdown on Import Car Insurance

Deciding what kind of car to buy involves many factors; performance, reputation, size, and personal style are just some of them. In the end, these factors add up to one thing: what car you feel most comfortable buying. One thing many buyers don't consider is the price of car insurance --especially import car insurance. To find the coverage you're comfortable with for an imported car, you may want to look into insurance before you make a purchase. On the surface, import car insurance is the same as domestic car insurance. However, there are some distinctions that might drive up your premium.

Cost Factors
At the outset of your search for import car insurance, you will be the determining factor for the cost of your annual premium. Your age, gender, home city, education level, are all part of a profile insurers use to determine an approximate premium. Perhaps even more important are your driving record, credit history, and insurance history. If you receive a traffic citation, adverse credit mark, or let your insurance lapse for any period, you can expect your premiums to rise. How much you drive --annual mileage --is obviously important as well; the less time on the road, the less chance of an accident. Where insurance for imports begins to skew from many domestic cars is the cost of the car itself --both its value and the cost of repairs.

Comparing Cars
Take a look at how the cost for state-required car insurance varies from car to car in Chicago. Assume that a 35-year-old man drives these cars about 10 miles roundtrip per day. For some import car insurance, the car's value alone will drive premiums high. A Mercedes-Benz E350, for example, costs nearly $400 more per year to insure than a Toyota Camry SE. Other times, it might be the cost of repairing a car that influences premiums. Thanks to local expertise in how these cars operate, the repairs for domestic cars are often less expensive, which can affect insurance costs. A 2010 Ford Taurus SE will have annual premium of about $1,031, while a 2010 Toyota Camry SE will have an annual premium over $1,100 --even though the Taurus carries a retail cost of approximately $3,000 more.

Whose Cars Are Stolen?
It's debatable exactly what factors most affect import car insurance costs in every particular case, but you can be sure that stolen crime rates don't help. According to the National Crime Information Center, the three most-stolen cars in 2009 were the Honda Civic, Honda Accord, and Toyota Camry. Thieves can generally sell the parts from an imported car for more than the parts of a domestic car, which makes them attractive targets.

Knowledge Saves Money
None of this means you should fear an imported car. You simply need to exercise some judgment, and import car insurance won't be that expensive. To combat the greater likelihood of your car being stolen, equip it with an anti-theft device. Insurers will respond with a lower premium. There are a number of other steps you can take for lower insurance quotes, including placing multiple cars on a single policy, taking advantage of carpools or public transport, or combining your car and home insurance policies. With an online search, you can compare a number of offers and ask about possible discounts. A free service such as will save you time and money by comparing quotes for you. And it's available domestically --without even leaving your house or picking up the phone.

See how much you could save today on your car insurance. Get your free auto insurance quotes today!