We set out to research how much a car insurance policy for a Tesla Model 3 costs in the state of California, and have gathered our findings here to help you understand which insurance carriers you should consider for your new car. In other jurisdictions, it is very difficult and expensive to insure any Tesla model, and we wanted to see what the situation was in California as this can impact the cost of ownership of a Tesla. We hope our research helps you obtain the most economical insurance coverage for your needs, and in that manner keep the ownership costs of your Tesla manageable.
Tesla Model 3 Insurance Costs (Representative – Updated April 2020)
|Carrier||Monthly Premium with Minimum Limits||Monthly Premium with Recommended Limits|
How we went about calculating the representative rates
In order to obtain the most accurate gauge of the current insurance market, we went to each of the insurance carrier websites and obtained quotes for a 2020 Tesla Model 3 in California. We detailed the information we used below – the closer your profile fits that of the one we used, the more similar you can expect your rates to be to the ones quoted in this article.
- Age: 32
- Sex: Male
- Zip Code: 90007 (Los Angeles)
- Credit Score: Excellent
- Bachelor’s Degree
- Profession: Engineer
- No recent accidents
- Vehicle Financed
- 10 mile commute 5 days a week
- No group affiliations
Coverage Options we Selected:
- $500 Deductible
- Rental Reimbursement and Roadside Assistance
- No mechanical breakdown coverage
- Liability BI/PD 100/300/100
- Uninsured 100/300
- Medical Payments $5000
California’s Minimum Insurance Limits:
In our research, we compare what a bare bones policy costs compared to one that includes our recommended limits. For your reference, the minimum insurance requirements in California are:
Bodily Injury: $15,000 per person/ $30,000 per accident
Property Damage: $5,000
Uninsured Motorist: $15,000 per person/ $30,000 per accident
What is special about insuring a Tesla?
In general, insuring a Tesla should not be very different than insuring any other car, but the insurance industry is notorious for being slow moving and is generally weary of anything new or different.
- Own repair network – Teslas can not be serviced at traditional mechanics, they have to be serviced by Tesla’s own proprietary network or by approved providers, which translates to higher maintenance and repair costs.
- Uncertainty around autonomous driving liability – Tesla does factor auto-pilot in to their proprietary insurance product and offers discounts for it, but to most other insurers, this actually presents a liability as they are unsure of its reliability or how it will fare in the future.
Companies that offer insurance for Tesla vehicles
Tesla – California is currently the only state where Tesla is offering their own car insurance product, and as a Tesla owner in the state you should at least consider them. Consistent with Tesla’s general model of direct to consumer, the only way you can get their insurance is by calling Tesla directly. Tesla claims that their rates are 20-30% lower than their competitors, but they do not provide evidence on their site to support these claims. Nevertheless, if you want to receive a quote, you can call 1-844-344-TESLA to speak with one of their licensed insurance agents. Anecdotal reports indicate some drivers are receiving large savings with them.
Geico, along with Progressive, was one of the first insurance companies to embrace low cost car insurance purchased online, and today they are the second largest auto insurer in the US. It stands to reason that they would also be one of the insurance companies to turn to when looking to insure a newer technology vehicle like a Tesla. It should be noted that reports from owners indicate that as of 2019, GEICO appears to have increased rates for insuring Teslas.
Note that as of April 2020, due to the Coronavirus pandemic, GEICO is offering a 15% discount on all policies.
Progressive is also known for their digital friendly buying experience focused on low cost insurance, and are third in US auto insurance market share behind Geico. In our research, they offered the lowest rates by far for young drivers looking to only obtain an auto insurance policy without further bundling.
Acquired by Allstate in 2011, eSurance is the other car insurance provider known for being digitally focused and catering to low cost price sensitive buyers. Their rates were similar to GEICO’s in our research.
StateFarm is one of the only auto insurance companies out in the market today that still relies heavily on their local agent network for distribution. Given that most companies are quoting very high prices to insure any Tesla model, it is worth it to give them a call to see if they can offer a decent price, particularly if you have homeowner’s insurance or some other bundling opportunities. If you are young and are looking only for auto insurance, it’s probably not worth it to give them a call as it is unlikely that they will be cheaper than Progressive.
The United Services Automobile Association (USAA) focuses on serving members of the US armed forces and their families. If you have a relative or are yourself a member of the military, this can often be the best option, as they generally offer very competitive rates on all of their products.
Compare various Tesla Insurance quotes
The only way to find out what company will offer you the best premium/coverage relationship is to obtain quotes from the various insurance carriers that work with Teslas. We recommend using a comparison tool like the one at TheSimpleDollar to make the process easier.
Our recommendation is to shop around and get as many quotes as possible. Different companies have different preferences and sets of discounts – it can be the case that the cheapest company for you may not be the cheapest for another owner. If you currently have an insurance company where you have your home insurance and other items, give them a call as many times insurance companies are willing to lower premiums on risks they typically do not like if they have other risks that balance the portfolio out. Having said all that, if you are solely looking for car insurance without bundling, it does appear that Progressive is having competitive rates at the moment. Be sure to check out Tesla’s own insurance product before making a purchase, as we have also heard reports of drivers receiving very cheap quotes from them.