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San Diego Car Insurance Rates

Stacks of coins with small toy car on weathered wood planks

San Diego drivers can expect average car insurance prices to be $1,614 a year, or about $134 a month for full coverage. Policy discounts could get the rate as low as $927, and liability-only rates are estimated at $503 a year. State Farm, Farmers, and Allstate insure over 35% of the vehicles in San Diego, and USAA has the cheapest rates if drivers have a military affiliation.

The figure below shows the average rate and prices for individual policy coverage types.

Annual premium for full coverage: $1,614

Rate estimates by individual coverage type:

Comprehensive $354
Collision $648
Liability $430

Rates are estimated based on a 40-year-old driver with a clean driving record and rated on an average passenger sedan like a Honda Accord, Toyota Camry, or Ford Focus.

Price Range by Policy Type

A policy with only liability insurance will be the most affordable, but it does not provide protection for damage to your vehicle from perils like theft, fire, or collision. California requires drivers to buy minimum liability insurance limits of 15/30/5, which means $15,000 of bodily injury coverage per person, $30,000 of bodily injury coverage per occurrence, and $5,000 of property damage insurance. These are not high limits and can quickly be exhausted even in a minor accident, so consider buying higher limits for additional protection.

Drivers who have multiple violations on their driving record or have an adverse claim history may be forced to buy coverage from the non-standard or high-risk market. Rates for these policies are considerably higher than the average full coverage policy as shown below.

Liability Only $503
Full Coverage $1,614
High Risk $3,486

Full Coverage Policy Price Comparisons

The chart below shows how rates are affected by different scenarios. The cheapest discount price is what drivers can expect to pay if they are a preferred risk and qualify for the majority of discounts offered by their company.

The high deductible, average rate, and low deductible prices show how choosing different physical damage deductibles (comprehensive and collision) affect policy prices. High deductibles save drivers money because in the event of a claim, the policyholder pays more of the repair cost. With low deductibles, the insurance company pays more, which equates to high prices.

View Chart as Image

San Diego Full Coverage Car Insurance Cost Comparison
Prices for full coverage insurance in San Diego range from the cheapest discount rate of $927 up to the most expensive rate for a 16-year-old driver of $5,962 a year

In this example, drivers could see savings of $669 a year by choosing $1,000 deductibles rather than the more expensive $100 deductibles. At that price point, as long as your average time between claims is 16 months or more, you will come out ahead financially by choosing the higher deductible.

Rates by Make and Model of Vehicle

San Diego has all types of vehicles, from sporty sun chasers cruising the coast to tough four-wheel drive jeeps and trucks traversing Otay Mountain. Whatever vehicle you drive, it’s going to have an effect on the rate you pay to insure it.

Exotic, expensive, or high-performance vehicles cost more to insure due to the higher cost to repair and a naturally higher actual cash value. Larger 3/4 and 1-ton trucks tend to be more expensive than average due to having a higher-than-average liability claim frequency.

The table below shows estimated auto insurance costs for a variety of popular vehicles in the San Diego area.

San Diego Car Insurance Rates for Popular Vehicles
Make and ModelAnnual PremiumMonthly Premium
Chevrolet Silverado$1,711$143
Dodge Ram$1,756$146
Ford Escape$1,350$113
Ford Focus$1,566$131
Ford Fusion$1,719$143
Ford F-150$1,523$127
GMC Acadia$1,490$124
GMC Sierra$1,683$140
Honda Accord$1,512$126
Honda Civic$1,771$148
Honda CR-V$1,313$109
Honda Pilot$1,538$128
Hyundai Sonata$1,644$137
Kia Optima$1,676$140
Nissan Altima$1,668$139
Nissan Rogue$1,629$136
Toyota Camry$1,650$138
Toyota Corolla$1,614$135
Toyota Prius$1,506$126
Toyota RAV4$1,527$127
Get Rates for Your Vehicle Go

Top Ten Car Insurance Companies in San Diego

The companies listed below are ranked by market share, with average rates in the state of California. San Diego’s rates are really quite low compared to some other areas in California like Los Angeles and San Francisco. Car insurance prices in San Diego run right around the state average.

State Farm is the largest insurer in the state of California, with Farmers Insurance a close second. USAA has the best overall car insurance prices in San Diego, but drivers have to have a military affiliation in order to buy from them. With San Diego’s large naval presence, USAA would be a good option for many families.

California Car Insurance Companies
RankCompanyMarket ShareAverage Rate
1State Farm14.45%$1,716
2Farmers Insurance12.45%$1,986
4Mercury General8.27%$1,518
5Auto Club8.11%$2,526
10Liberty Mutual3.40%$2,241
Get Your Rates Go

Source: National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) 2015 Market Share Report and The Zebra

San Diego car insurance infographic

Top Ten Ways to Save on San Diego Car Insurance

We covered a lot of rate information, but chances are you’re looking for ways to find cheaper auto insurance. The following are our top ten ways to save money when shopping for coverage in San Diego.

  1. If your car is getting older and the cost for comprehensive and collision coverage is more than 10% of the actual cash value of the vehicle, you might consider dropping full coverage
  2. Raising physical damage deductibles can save up to $700 a year. If you have adequate savings, consider this step to reduce rates.
  3. Take a hard look at your policy coverages and eliminate the one’s you really don’t need. This might include things like an auto club membership, towing coverage, or rental reimbursement.
  4. Make sure you’re earning all the discounts you’re entitled to. Some are more difficult to determine if you qualify, so ask your agent or company.
  5. If you’re in the market for a new vehicle, check rate quotes with several agents or companies prior to purchasing. You may find that the difference in insurance prices may be the determining factor of which model you buy.
  6. If you have a teen driver on your policy with full coverage, consider dropping comprehensive and collision and only insuring for liability.
  7. If you normally have a clean driving record but you get a ticket, check into a driver’s safety course that could keep the ticket off your record.
  8. Never allow coverage to lapse between policies. Companies want to see that you have maintained continuous coverage, and if you have a gap, chances are good you’ll pay a surcharge.
  9. If you’re looking at switching companies, quote your policy well ahead of the renewal date and do it online. Many companies offer big discounts if you are prompt and do the work yourself.
  10. The best way to lower your San Diego car insurance rates is to shop around. There are a lot of companies to choose from, and if you take a little time to compare rates, you could save some serious cash. Price quotes are always free and the more quotes you get, the more potential you have to save.


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Rates by Driver Age

San Diego Insurance Rates by Driver Age
Driver AgePremium

Full coverage, $500 deductibles

Rates by Deductible

Insurance Rates with Different Deductibles

Full coverage, driver age 40

Rates by Liability Limit

Insurance Rates with Different Liability Limits
Liability LimitPremium
100 CSL$1,742
300 CSL$1,979
500 CSL$2,151

Full coverage, driver age 40

Rates for High Risk Drivers

Insurance Rates for High Risk Drivers

Full coverage, $500 deductibles, two speeding tickets, and one at-fault accident

If a financial responsibility filing is required, the additional charge below may also apply.

SR-22 Surcharge $224

Potential Rate Discounts

If you qualify for discounts, you may save the amounts shown below.

5-yr Accident Free$121
5-yr Claim Free$104
Paid in Full/EFT$75
Advance Quote$80
Online Quote$115
Total Discounts$687
Rate after discounts $927

Discounts are estimated and may not be available from every company or in every state.

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