The Cheapest Cars to Insure - Our Guide

Wondering which are the cheapest cars to insure? 

Buying insurance may not be the most glamorous part of driving a new car, but it’s a necessity - and with all the other costs involved in motoring, it pays to find the best deal. 

The cost of your insurance premium can be affected by various factors, including where you live and what job you do. 

While you’re unlikely to move house or change jobs for the sake of cheaper insurance, there is one factor you can change that will have a significant influence on your insurance premium - and that’s the car you choose. 

Here’s our guide to the cheapest cars to insure in 2020.


What affects the price of insurance?

According to the Association of British Insurers (ABI), the average cost of comprehensive motor insurance in the UK in 2019 was £471. 

However, the amount you pay for your insurance can fluctuate heavily based on a number of variables. Some of these variables focus on you and the way you’ll use the car - for example, your age and where you usually park. 

Your choice of car can also have a big impact. When it comes to the vehicle itself there are several factors that can affect the price of insurance:

  • The value of the car 
  • The car’s safety rating and security features 
  • How long it takes to repair 
  • Bumper compatibility 
  • The cost of repairs and of 23 common replacement parts 
  • The car’s performance, including top speed and acceleration

Based on these factors, each car is placed in an insurance group. There are 50 different insurance groups, with Group 1 being the cheapest to insure and Group 50 being the most expensive. 

The Group Rating System is operated by Thatcham Research on behalf of the ABI. The easier and cheaper your car is to repair, and the less powerful, risky or expensive it is, the lower the group it will be in. 

If you want to get one of the cheapest cars to insure, you should be on the lookout for cars in the lowest groups. 

It’s worth noting that the insurance group ratings are only advisory, rather than compulsory. While insurers are not required to follow them, most of them do use the ratings as a factor in calculating premiums. As such, they’re usually a good indicator of the likely relative cost of insuring a particular vehicle.


The top 10 cheapest cars to insure

We’ve put together a list of our top 10 cars in the lowest insurance groups to help you shave a chunk off your insurance bill. 

Here are our top 10 cheapest cars to insure:

Nissan Micra

The Nissan Micra has been a popular choice since the 1980s - particularly among new drivers - thanks to being cheap and easy to drive. 

With the latest model, Nissan has given the Micra an upmarket makeover with a smarter interior and sportier look. 

It’s very good to drive, with a quiet cabin and light steering. Nissan has paid a lot of attention to driver comfort, with a lower driving position and greater seat adjustment. 

For the cheapest insurance, opt for the entry level 1.0 litre 70bhp engine in either Acenta, Visia or Visia+ models, which are all in Group 1.

SEAT Ibiza

The Ibiza is SEAT’s best-selling car. It’s reliable, comfortable and cheap to run, making it a great supermini option. 

The latest Ibiza has seen a big step forward from previous generations, with cleaner engines, upgraded technology, more equipment and flashier looks. 

Its sharp steering, light controls and good visibility make it easy to drive. Despite its small size it’s practical too, with a class-leading 355 litre boot capacity and room to seat four adults comfortably. 

The 1.0 litre MPI 74bhp models in S, SE and SE Technology trim are the ones to go for if you want the cheapest car insurance, sitting comfortably in Group 2.

Kia Rio

The Kia Rio ticks all the boxes at an affordable price. It has solid safety specs, including electronic stability control, a vehicle stability management system and twin front, side and curtain airbags. 

The latest Rio has new mild-hybrid engine technology, providing better fuel efficiency and reduced CO2 emissions. Kia has also introduced an improved suspension system, which offers better handling and makes the car more comfortable to drive at all speeds. 

The Rio has a spacious interior and plenty of room in the boot. In fact, at 325 litres it has one of the biggest boots in its class, making it a great small family car. As with other Kias, it’s also covered by a generous seven-year, 100,000-mile warranty. 

The Rio 2 version with the 1.4 litre CRDi engine is in Group 2, meaning it’s likely to be one of the cheapest cars to insure.

Volkswagen Polo

The Volkswagen Polo is one of the most popular superminis available. It’s an impressive all-rounder, offering a comfortable drive, great safety features and a sleek design. 

The latest version is well-equipped, with Bluetooth connectivity, an easy-to-use media touchscreen, an alarm and interior protection as standard. 

It offers excellent ride quality with supple handling and has a stiffer body than previous generations, which should reduce body roll. 

Its design is pleasingly refined, and it’s larger than previous generations with a decent amount of boot space. 

The models to choose if you want the cheapest insurance are the SE models with the 1.0 litre MPI engine in either 64 or 74bhp, as these fall into Group 1.

Vauxhall Adam

The Vauxhall Adam is a great car for those who value affordability, stylish looks and personalisation options. 

The Adam is almost endlessly customisable. There’s a huge range of colours, trim levels, accessories and design elements to choose from, meaning you can create your own unique version. 

It has light steering that’s well suited to zipping around town, although it feels less responsive at higher speeds. It offers a relatively smooth ride but can be a little noisy at motorway speeds. 

The interior is well-designed, with good visibility and plenty of adjustment for the driver’s seat. It looks upmarket too, although it’s a little tight on space in the rear seats and boot. 

The versions with the 1.2 litre 69bhp engine are among the cheapest cars to insure: the Energised and Unlimited models both fall into Group 2, while the Slam, Jam, Glam, Griffin and Energised Black Jack models are in Group 3.

Volkswagen up!

The up! offers real Volkswagen quality in a compact package, setting a high standard in the city car class. 

It’s good fun to drive, with nimble steering and smooth handling, and it manages to feel solid despite being one of the lightest small cars you can buy. 

It has excellent space efficiency, with a long wheelbase that means it has far more room inside than most comparatively tiny cars. The interior is spacious enough to fit four adults comfortably, and the boot capacity sits at an impressive 251 litres. 

The Volkswagen up! Is definitely among the cheapest cars to insure, with many different versions falling into Groups 1 and 2. The Take up! and Move up! models with the 1.0 litre BMT engine are in Group 1.

Renault Clio

Stiff competition in the supermini arena has forced Renault to up its game with the latest Clio. It’s got new safety features, better cabin technology and a more upmarket look, making it a real contender in its class. 

The new Clio has an eye-catching design, with ribs on the bonnet and a larger, sweeping grille for a sleek and sculpted look. 

The finish has been improved significantly in the cabin, with premium materials and a pleasingly large media screen. The seats are particularly comfortable, and there’s a hefty 391-litre boot. 

It’s cheaper to insure than lots of other hatchbacks of its size, with the 1.0 SCe engine in Play and Iconic trim falling into Group 3.

Skoda Citigo

The Skoda Citigo is another car that impresses all round, making it an affordable front-runner in the city car class. 

It has lively and responsive handling, so it’s great for nipping around city streets. Its diminutive size means it can also fit into the tightest of parking spaces. It does well on faster roads too, offering a very comfortable and quiet drive. 

This is another car that manages to pack a surprisingly spacious interior into a small body. There’s plenty of room for four adults to sit comfortably, and its 251-litre boot is one of the largest you’ll find on a car this size. 

It’s cheap to insure too, with the basic 1.0 litre engine version falling into Group 2 in the S, SE, Monte Carlo and Colour Edition models.

Hyundai i10

The latest Hyundai i10 is touted as the most high-tech city car ever. It’s seen a significant upgrade from previous generations, with higher-end looks and a more spacious interior. 

The cabin offers great visibility with good sightlines all round, making it perfect for performing tight manoeuvres in town. 

The new i10 has a longer wheelbase than its predecessor, giving it a very roomy interior. Two adults should easily fit in the back - and maybe even a third in a pinch - and it has a class-leading 252 litres of boot space. 

Opt for the 1.0 litre engine in Premium trim and the i10 will fall into Group 2, making it one of the cheapest cars to insure.

Toyota Yaris

The Toyota Yaris is reliable, easy to drive and cheap to run, and the latest generation adds an injection of style to its already impressive list of plus points. 

It has improved suspension and a more rigid body, offering the smoothest and most comfortable ride on a Yaris yet. 

Its updated styling draws influence from the Toyota Corolla, with various folds and creases added to the panel work for a more polished look. A lot of thought has been given to safety, with significant upgrades in both passive and active safety systems. 

Choose the 1.0 litre VVT-i Active model if you want the cheapest Yaris to insure - it’s in Group 2.

How to find the cheapest car insurance

So, you’ve chosen one of the cheapest cars to insure - now how do you make sure you’re getting the best car insurance deal for that particular vehicle? 

The sheer number of insurance providers and policies out there can seem a bit daunting. Luckily, we’ve got a few tips and tricks to keep your costs as low as possible:

  • Pay annually, not monthly: Paying monthly may seem like a nice easy way to spread the cost, but you’ll end up paying more - sometimes by hundreds of pounds. Paying monthly is essentially taking on an expensive loan from your insurer, with the average amount of interest at around 25% APR. 
  • Avoid auto-renewal: It’s easy to let your insurance policy continue at the end of a year, but you may pay a lot more this way. Don’t just accept your insurer’s renewal offer - shop around for other quotes and ask your insurer if they can match or beat them. 
  • Buy your insurance 20-26 days ahead: An investigation by MoneySavingExpert found that the cheapest time to buy car insurance is 20-26 days before the policy start date. Getting it earlier or later may mean it costs significantly more. 
  • Make sure you’re on the electoral roll: Many insurers use the electoral roll as part of their ID checking process. If you’re not on it or your information is incorrect, your quote may be higher - or some insurers may not even offer you cover. You can register here
  • Tweak your job title: Your occupation is one of the factors that influences your insurance premium - and sometimes, tweaking your job title can result in a big price difference. For example, a writer may be cheaper than a journalist, or a PA may be cheaper than a secretary. Try changing your job title to see if it makes a difference - but only change it to something that could legitimately describe what you do. Never lie - this would be fraud. 
  • Compare different levels of cover: Third party insurance may not always be cheaper than comprehensive. Less comprehensive policies tend to be bought by drivers who claim more, so insurers work this into their pricing. There are no hard and fast rules, but don’t assume lower cover will always be cheaper.

Insuring your car doesn’t have to break the bank, especially if you’re willing to shop around and be flexible on the vehicle you drive. 

If you’re in the market for a new car, why not check out our range of brand new cars to lease?

Or if you're not sure whether to lease or buy a car, check out our guide.