The Model 3 is Tesla’s first foray into the mass market. While it’s cheaper than its other models, it’s still classified as a luxury electric car, so insurance is on the pricey side compared to other sedans. The reason is simple: Insurers have to assume more risk than they would for a standard mid-priced sedan, with its custom parts and high speeds.
The average monthly car insurance premium for the Tesla 3 is a surprising $277 a month, which comes to $3,319 a year. At a starting price of $52,990, the Tesla 3 is the cheapest Tesla to insure, though you might want to increase your maximums to fully protect this luxury car.
Your rates vary depending on your provider, driving record, credit history and the level of coverage you choose. When calculating your premium, insurers also look at where you live. In provinces like Ontario and British Columbia, car insurance is notoriously expensive, regardless of what you drive.
We arrived at this number by comparing a number of quotes from various insurers:
Male, 35 years old
Living in Ontario
Perfect driving record
Drives 15,000 km annually
Driving a 2020 Model 3 75D 4DR AWD
How do I compare insurance for the Tesla Model 3?
When you’re shopping around for an insurer, think about these factors:
Price. Electric cars are generally more expensive to insure than their gas counterparts, though insurers may offer an electric car discount.
Additional coverage. You may want more than the minimum provincial coverage requirement for your Tesla. Since Teslas can be more expensive to repair, you might want to opt for collision coverage. And if you live in a high-crime area or a town where extreme weather conditions or rock slides are a concern, comprehensive coverage could be a good idea.
Extras. If you want to enhance your policy with extras like accident forgiveness, look for a provider that ticks the boxes you’re interested in.
Restrictions. Each provider has its own set of limitations. Research these now to avoid any gaps in coverage, denied claims and other surprises later on. It’s possible that not every insurer will be prepared to cover a Tesla, even this entry-level model.
Manufacturer offer or loyalty discount. Tesla is known to offer showroom discounts, as well as referral discounts that increase with each qualifying referral.
Warranty. The Model 3 is protected by a new vehicle limited warranty for 4 years or 80,000 km — whatever comes first. Tesla also covers vehicles with the standard battery for 8 years or 160,000 km, as well as those with the long-range battery for 8 years or 192,000 km.
What factors affect car insurance for a Tesla Model 3?
The rate you’re offered reflects your driving history, credit, location, and the ins and outs of the car you drive. For a Tesla Model 3, your premium may also be affected by these factors:
Body type. The Model 3 is a mid-size, luxury, all-electric, four-door sedan. It’s typically pricier to insure than a gas car, but cheaper than other Tesla models.
Fuel option. The all-electric car has two types of batteries: standard and long range. The long range is the fancier and most popular option, so choosing that may hike the price of your premium slightly.
Type of car. The Model 3 is classified as a luxury electric car. Insurers compensate for the high cost of repairs by charging expensive premiums.
Likelihood of theft. Thanks to their sophisticated GPS tracking system, the theft rate for Tesla cars is extremely low. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, Teslas are among the least stolen cars in Canada. Even if the car does get stolen, it is recovered more often than not.
Cost of repairs. As a luxury electric car, the Model 3 is expensive to fix, and you can’t take it to any old mechanic. It has to be a Tesla-approved body shop. Insurance rates go up for cars that are expensive to repair, so consider including comprehensive coverage with a higher deductible if you want to cut down on your monthly payment.
Safety features. The car has impressive safety features, like electronic stability control (ESC) and blind spot sensors. This emphasis on safety may help to cut the cost of insurance.
Providers care about the person driving the car, too. When determining your premium, they consider your driving history, including any violations, accidents and claims. If your driving record is clean or free from major violations in the last 3 to 6 years, you may score a better rate. Insurers will also look at your credit history, where you live and who else will be driving the car.
Does the Tesla Model 3 qualify for discounts?
Depending on your provider, the Model 3 might qualify for several discounts. These discounts may help to offset the high cost of electric car insurance and ensure you get the most value for your money. As you’re researching, ask if these safety discounts apply.
Reliability and safety ratings for the Tesla Model 3
The Model 3 has garnered a solid reputation for safety. It has received top marks across various safety ratings in North America, Australia and Europe. Features like lane assist, automatic obstacle detection and automatic braking contribute to its high safety performance.
The Model 3 is also incredibly efficient. If you drive around 20,000 kilometres a year, you can expect to pay $355 annually to drive the car. Compare that to the $2,480.00 per year to drive a similar gas vehicle, and you can see how the savings can pile up over the lifetime of the car. As for battery life, the base Model 3 Standard Plus travels around 402 km on a full charge under ideal conditions. If you opt for the long-range battery, that number increases to 518 km.
The Tesla Model 3 is a luxury sports car, which doesn’t make it the most wallet-friendly car on the market. It tends to be on the pricier side to insure, but you may be able to cut down costs with discounts for safety features and defensive driving. Plus, as a bonus, Tesla offers a solid warranty program.
Not necessarily. Tesla has a network of approved body shops around the country, so your best bet is to find one close to you. The Tesla Body Repair Program team work with these shops to make sure they’re meeting the company’s stringent standards for repairs.
Your rate is a product of your driver profile as well as the car itself. Underwriters take these factors into account:
Katia Iervasi is a staff writer who hails from Australia and now calls New York home. Her writing and analysis has been featured on sites like Forbes, Best Company and Financial Advisor around the world. Armed with a BA in Communication and a journalistic eye for detail, she navigates insurance and finance topics for Finder, so you can splash your cash smartly (and be a pro when the subject pops up at dinner parties).
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