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Do Vehicle Safety Ratings Impact Insurance Rates?

Buckle Team
October 18, 2022

Over the years, you may have heard that your vehicle's safety ratings can impact your car insurance rates. But is this actually true?

As a delivery or rideshare driver, you're always looking for a good deal, including finding the right car for your gig lifestyle. You also may wonder if vehicle safety ratings affect insurance rates as you search for the best gig insurance coverage for that car.

The short answer is yes, your auto safety rating can impact your insurance premiums. But there's a lot more to explore concerning insurance and the safety rating for a car. This article will examine safety ratings, vehicle safety features and insurance rates so you're ready to hit the road.

What Are Vehicle Safety Ratings?

Vehicle safety ratings indicate how safe cars will be in motor vehicle crashes. The ratings are based on a number of variables, depending on what organization is providing the information. Two bodies are mainly responsible for car safety ratings:

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)

As part of the U.S. Department of Transportation, the NHTSA performs crash tests that determine how safe a car is in front and side crashes and rollovers. Its 5-Star Ratings Program, which also incorporates real crash data, designates how well each car performs, with five stars being the highest rating. Gig drivers can visit the NHTSA website to see and compare vehicle safety ratings among different cars.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)

The IIHS is an independent organization that rates car safety in rollover and side-impact crash tests. Its insurance safety rating system designates whether a car's safety is poor, marginal, acceptable or good. The IIHS website lists the group's top safety picks for gig drivers to review.  

Other organizations, like Edmunds, Car and Driver, MotorTrend and CARFAX, use IIHS data and NHTSA data, along with additional information, to provide their own safety ratings.  

Why Are Insurance Car Safety Ratings Important?

A car crash can involve significant payouts for an insurance company. To avoid these losses, insurers pay close attention to insurance car safety ratings, which help them understand the risk involved in insuring different cars. Of course, vehicle safety ratings are just one factor in how insurance companies evaluate risk. They also consider theft data for individual vehicles and review a person's driving record as they assign insurance rates for gig drivers. A good insurance safety rating doesn't automatically mean lower premiums if the person has a poor driving record.

Gig Drivers Trust Buckle for Their Car Insurance Needs

At Buckle, we believe that a gig driver's car insurance rates should reflect only the essential details, like vehicle safety ratings and your driving record and garaging ZIP code. That's why we never run a credit check when we quote your insurance premium. Gig drivers know they can rely on Buckle to provide car insurance designed specifically for their needs. Request a quote today and see what Buckle insurance can do for you.

What Vehicle Safety Features Are Available?

Many vehicle safety features, like airbags, seat belts and daytime running lights, are now standard on cars. Crash avoidance technologies also are becoming more popular. These driver-assisted technologies can include:

  • Forward collision warnings
  • Lane departure warnings
  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Rearview video systems
  • Blindspot warnings

Do Safety Features Lower Car Insurance?  

Besides vehicle safety ratings, insurers also consider safety features as they decide on insurance rates. Many safety features can help lower your car insurance, but they can also present a double-edged sword. Some advanced driver-assistance systems include premium-increasing features. Insurance companies assign higher premiums for these systems because they're expensive to repair in case of an accident.  

Are New Cars More Expensive to Insure?

Even though they may have better insurance safety ratings, new cars may be more expensive to insure than older cars because the more recent models are worth more and may have higher theft rates. On the other hand, a new sedan may be less expensive to insure than an older sports car because of the higher risks inherent with sports cars. There are so many factors involved in assigning insurance rates that it makes sense to talk with your insurance company to learn more about what affects your premiums.

Purchase Your Gig Insurance From Buckle

Now that you know how vehicle safety ratings can impact car insurance, you're ready for the next step. Buckle takes the confusion and uncertainty out of the insurance process with quick, straightforward quotes designed just for gig drivers. We provide insurance whether you're driving on- or off-app and offer deductibles as low as $500. Become a Buckle member today and take advantage of everything we offer.  

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