BMW Insurance: An In-depth Owner’s Guide
Are you looking for cheap and reliable BMW Insurance? We can help. We got quotes for the most popular BMW models to determine which companies offer the lowest prices. Additionally, we ranked the best insurers based on their customer service quality, financial strength, and the variety of discounts and optional coverages.
Finally, we made a cheat sheet with various tips that’ll help you get the most out of your coverage. If you apply them, you’ll save up to 40% without compromising the quality of your insurance. So jump right in to find the perfect protection plan for your BMW.
How Much Does It Cost to Insure a BMW?
BMW car insurance price is higher than average, but that’s not surprising. BMWs are mid-range to luxury cars, which increases the cost of their repairs and maintenance. This spikes the rates up, particularly if you choose collision and comprehensive coverages.
However, BMW’s good safety records keep the medical expenses coverages checked, which balances the overall expenses.
To verify the exact details, we commissioned a study including the most recent BMW models. Check the full information about BMW car insurance cost below.
Carsurance Sample Quote
Our reference driver was a 40-year-old single male with a clean driving record and a good credit rating, living in San Diego, CA. The limits we choose were $50K/$100K for bodily injury and $50K for property damage.
We also selected uninsured motorist coverage for the same amount, as well as collision and comprehensive coverage, each with $500 deductibles. The rental car reimbursement limits we choose were $30/$900, and our annual mileage was 10,000.
The primary use of the car was commuting to work. Our reference model was 2016 mid-range BMW, but we also choose 2018 X2, since that particular model came out later.
Our Results (Average Prices for Different BMW Models)
The total average for all models included in our test was $203 per month. Unsurprisingly, the cheapest BMW to insure was 2016 BMW 328i with a monthly premium of $168, followed by BMW’s smaller SUVs, X1 and X2. On the other hand, BMW’s flagship 7 series was the most expensive, with a monthly premium of $247.
While the average price was high, it was in the ballpark with other luxury vehicles with similar price tags. For instance, our research found that the median insurance price for a Tesla Model 3 was $220.
BMW Auto Insurance Cost (By Model)
Below are the monthly premiums for our reference driver in San Diego. In the brackets, you’ll find the estimated fair deal price for the model and trim we used.
3 Series Insurance Rates
4 Series Insurance Rates
5 Series Insurance Rates
7 Series Insurance Rates
X1 Insurance Rates
X2 Insurance Rates
X3 Insurance Rates
X5 Insurance Rates
Companies That Offer the Best and Cheapest BMW Insurance
The Best Overall Insurer for BMW: Farmers
There are many excellent regional insurers for BMW, but there’s no better company nationwide than Farmers. For starters, it’s quite affordable, costing only $123 for full coverage for 2016 BMW series 3.
Furthermore, Farmers belongs to the upper echelon when it comes to customer service.
The company scored four out of five stars in J.D. Power’s 2018 Claims Satisfaction Study, taking the fourth place overall.
Farmers’ NAIC ratio also confirms the narrative that the company excels in customer service. It’s 0.75, which means that the company gets 25% fewer complaints than average.
While Farmers is the best insurance for BMW, it has its downsides. In our full review of the company, we noted that it’s particularly expensive for young drivers. We also highlighted that, despite the generally favorable customer satisfaction ratings, Farmers scores poor in specific locations.
These are the California region, mid-Atlantic region, North Central region, Northwest region, and Southwest region.
If you are based in these locations, you might want to check some other companies, such as Amica, Ameriprise, or Nationwide.
On the plus side, you can profit with Farmers by paying your BMW car insurance premium. If you obtain Farmers Rewards Visa or Visa Signature® card, you’ll earn points by buying Farmers’ products. You can redeem them for travel discounts, gift cards, merchandise, and much more.
You can add solid financial strength to the list of Farmers plus points. The company’s AM Best rating is “A” or “Excellent,” the third-best possible.
All in all, no insurer is without its flaws, but despite the drawbacks, we would recommend every BMW owner to at least get a quote from Farmers.
Choose Farmers for affordable rates, reliable customer service, and various discounts and benefits.
Look elsewhere if you live in a region where Farmers scores low in customer service or you want an insurer with the best financial strength.
The Best for Financial Strength: Geico
Financial stability should be among the things to prioritize when choosing your next insurer. After all, if a company does not handle its business responsibly, it will not have the funds to pay the claim expenses. That’s why Geico should be among the top options for BMW car insurance.
It’s a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, which is the fourth company in the 2019 Fortune 500 list, ahead of Amazon, CVS, and AT&T. It’s no wonder then that Geico’s AM Best rating is “A++” or “Superior” — the best possible.
Besides outstanding financial strength, Geico is also among the most affordable insurers for BMW drivers. Additionally, its website, mobile app, and online quote tool are intuitive and fast. This means that Geico’s slogan “15 minutes can save you 15% or more” is true for BMW insurance as well.
However, it’s not all roses for Geico. The company’s customer service is rated as average. It got three out of five stars in J.D. Power’s 2018 Claims Satisfaction study on a national level. Geico also performed subpar in a similar regional study — in California, New York, and Southwest area.
Nonetheless, this is not something peculiar to Geico. All big insurers, such as State Farm, Progressive, or Allstate, rank average or below average in customer service. Overall, Geico is definitely worth your attention.
Choose Geico for outstanding financial strength, low prices, and polished online tools.
Look elsewhere if first-rate customer service is your priority.
The Best for Riskier Drivers: Progressive
If you want quality BMW car insurance but also an affordable coverage, let Progressive take care of you. This is particularly true for drivers whose record is far from perfect since Progressive is a specialist for high-risk customers.
Aside from affordable premiums, even for those who like to push the pedal to the metal, Progressive has other things going for it.
For starters, it’s the third-largest insurer in the US by market share, meaning the company left nothing to chance when it comes to its online tools. Progressive’s website and mobile app are responsive and intuitive, while the online quote calculator is among the best around.
You’ll even have an option to buy an instant BMW car insurance online. Just input your desired premium using Progressive’s Name Your Price® tool, and the software will create the coverage for you.
You can also add excellent financial stability to the list of Progressive’s plus points. Its AM Best rating is “A+,” the second-highest possible. The company even offers a wide range of optional coverages and discounts.
However, Progressive’s customer service is a bit of a letdown. Like Geico, the company scores three out of five stars in J.D. Power’s 2018 rankings in the claims handling and shopping departments. Moreover, its rating on the Better Business Bureau’s website is a “B-,” which is below the industry average.
Nonetheless, this is the only notable drawback of choosing Progressive. If you’re ready to be persistent with its customer service, this insurer is a fine choice for your BMW.
Choose Progressive for its killer website and affordable rates, even for high-risk drivers.
Look elsewhere if you want a BMW car insurance provider that handles claims with utmost diligence.
The Best for Customer Service: Ameriprise
If you want to insure your BMW with a company that won’t let you down when an accident happens, give a shot to Ameriprise. It’s a Wisconsin based insurer that’s available in 32 states, but it has the biggest presence in California. It’s also the highest-rated in the California region, according to the J.D. Power’s 2018 rankings.
Ameriprise is also among the cheapest BMW car insurance providers around. The company charges us only $125 per month for series 3 coverage, including comprehensive and collision. That’s why we ranked it ahead of other companies that also excel in customer satisfaction, such as Amica, Erie, or Auto-Owners.
Besides affordable prices and keeping customers happy, Ameriprise has many other things going for it. For instance, if you purchase its insurance through Costco, you’ll qualify for additional discounts and perks such as free roadside assistance.
You can add Ameriprise’s financial strength to the list of its advantages. The company’s AM Best rating is “A” or “Excellent.” While not as good as Geico’s, State Farm’s, or Auto-Owner’s, the average customer has nothing to worry about.
The only notable downside of Ameriprise is that its insurance is not widely available. However, if you have access to its coverage, we urge you to give it a shot.
Choose Ameriprise for outstanding customer service, affordable prices, and extra perks for Costco customers.
Look elsewhere if Ameriprise does not sell insurance in your region.
The Cheap but Not the Cheerful: Mercury
You probably figured out by now that Mercury is among the cheapest BMW car insurance companies. However, we cannot universally recommend this insurer. As we noted in our review, its customer service is subpar. Mercury received only two stars in J.D. Power’s claims processing and shopping satisfaction surveys on a national level.
It was also ranked dead last in both categories. Furthermore, Mercury scored poorly in J.D. Power’s regional rankings too. In the California region, where Mercury writes most of its policies, the company is ranked as the second from the bottom.
There are some other minor drawbacks to Mercury insurance besides its lousy customer service. For starters, the company does not offer as many optional coverages and discounts as the competition.
Additionally, while Mercury’s auto insurance is cheap, its homeowners’ policies can be quite expensive. This may be particularly important for those who want to qualify for a bundle discount for their BMW insurance.
On the bright side, Mercury does have reliable financial operations. It’s AM Best rating is “A+” or “Excellent,” which is the second-best possible.
Additionally, the company offers Mercury Mechanical Protection. It functions as an extended warranty for pre-owned and newer vehicles. It covers the cost of repairs and parts in case your vehicle breaks down. There are several plans to choose from, and these are usually cheaper than the extended warranty sold by car dealers.
Nonetheless, Mercury’s overall performance is just too flawed to rank this company among the best BMW car insurance options. If you want an affordable insurer for your Bavarian friend, consider Erie, Auto-Owners, Geico, or Ameriprise, depending on your zip code.
Choose Mercury for low prices and its Mechanical Protection plan.
Look elsewhere if you want reliable customer service or a variety of optional coverages and discounts.
Honorable Mention: USAA
USAA is perhaps the best insurer for any BMW driver. It is affordable, and its customer service is outstanding, despite some recent issues. Additionally, USAA’s AM Best rating is “A++,” the best possible, and the company offers a wide range of optional coverages and discounts.
So what’s the catch? USAA sells its insurance for BMW only to former and current US Army members and their close families. However, if you belong to that particular group, USAA should be near the top of your shortlist of quote-worthy companies.
Choose USAA for exceptional performance across the board.
Look elsewhere if you are not a member of the US army or a close family.
Factors That Influence Premiums for BMW Car Insurance
Your BMW Model and Its Age
This one is obvious. As you’ve probably gathered from our price comparison, newer and more expensive models cost more to insure. If you opt-out of collision and comprehensive coverages, the variance will likely be less significant. That scenario might even favor newer models since they have more advanced safety features.
Your Driving Record and Experience
Statistics indicate that drivers who just got their license are nine times more likely to crash than those with years behind the wheel. Additionally, senior drivers can be dangerous because of their slower reaction times.
Moreover, drivers whose record contains a lot of citations or a major violation such as DUI, for example, will be a red flag for insurance companies.
Since these groups present a higher risk, they’ll have to pay more for their BMW auto insurance. Otherwise, high claim expense would eventually put insurance companies out of business.
Your Zip Code
Location, location, location. This mantra may have more bearing in the real estate market, but it pertains to auto insurance as well. Densely populated areas have more drivers on the roads, which spikes the chances of an accident happening. Furthermore, higher salaries and rental expenses increase the cost of running a business in a prestigious zip code.
Finally, some states, like Michigan (notorious for its peculiar limitless PIP car insurance system), have laws that drive car insurance prices through the roof. That’s why moving 50 miles from your home could slash $100-200 from your BMW car insurance quotes.
Your insurance company has the highest bearing on the premium. As you can probably guess, this the main reason that prices vary so much across the market.
For instance, the cheapest insurer for BMW 328i in our study, Liberty Mutual, required $120 per month, while the most expensive one — Travelers — wanted $240. But you should understand, however, that cheap BMW car insurance quotes are just one of the many things that matter. Customer service and financial strength ratings are also essential.
Your Credit History
When you apply for a quote, 95% of insurance companies will assign you a number between 300 and 900 called auto insurance score. It can be based on a myriad of factors, but it’s most often rooted in your credit rating. That’s because your credit rating is a reliable indicator of the likelihood of you making a claim, even stronger than your driving record.
However, California, Massachusetts, and Hawaii authorities prohibited this practice as unfairly discriminatory.
What is BMW Performance Insurance?
It’s an insurance program developed jointly by BMW’s US branch and Liberty Mutual. It does not offer anything that you cannot find elsewhere on the market, but it provides a combination of coverage that should fit a BMW perfectly.
- New Car Replacement (optional in some states) – This provides a brand new BMW that’s the same make and model if you sustain a total loss within the first year of ownership.
- Accident Forgiveness (unavailable in California) – Drivers with this coverage will not suffer a price hike after their first at-fault accident.
- Guaranteed Rate for 12 Months – Your BMW insurance rates won’t change from the first effective date of your policy unless your underwriting profile changes substantially.
- Multi-Car Discount – If you insure multiple BMWs on one policy, you’re bound to pay less. Each insurer we reviewed offered this discount.
- Original Replacement Parts – This guarantees that your BMW will be repaired only with original parts if it’s legal.
- Roadside Assistance (optional) – Covers the towing expenses if your car suffers a mechanical breakdown.
While Liberty Mutual did not score well in customer service in our review, its BMW Performance Insurance is still worth a try. It’s affordable and saves you time when customizing a policy to fit a BMW.
However, some other companies performed better overall, such as Ameriprise, Farmers, or Geico.
How to Get the Cheapest High-Quality Insurance for My BMW?
Choose an Insurer with a Wide Range of Discounts
Discounts are the best remedy for the expensive coverage for a BMW. That’s why you should study our reviews and the insurance companies’ websites to see how many premium reductions your desired insurer offers. Some of the most common ones that BMW drivers should be able to obtain quickly are as follows.
Good Driver Discount
BMW car insurance providers compare your age, credit history, and many other kinds of data before they issue a quote. Your driving record is among those factors. No insurer would miss a chance to cover a customer with a proven history of driving safely
If you are insuring various vehicles or buying different kinds of policies from the same company, you are bound to save.
Driver Habit Tracking
Many companies, such as Progressive, Nationwide, or Allstate, offer a program which relies on a telematics device to track your driving habits and adjust the premium accordingly. When you apply, your insurer will either use a mobile app or a GPS to monitor how safely you drive.
They’ll record any sudden braking, acceleration, or nighttime driving. If your results qualify, your BMW car insurance premium could be as much as 50% lower.
Many BMWs are equipped with advanced safety features, such as multiple airbags or ABS control. These will get you a discount from almost any insurer.
If your BMW has a factory fitted alarm, tracking device, or an ignition blocker, your comprehensive premium will be lower.
Explore the Market
This is arguably the best advice you’ll get for saving on car insurance. While all companies sell roughly the same product, the cost and quality vary substantially. That’s why the road to the best insurance for your BMW is through a quote comparison.
We emphasized “your” because insurance quotes are highly individualized. While guides such as this may give you a rough idea on the car insurance prices, your profile may be vastly different from our reference driver.
That’s why you should make a shortlist of the best car insurance companies and get quotes from all of them. The entire ordeal should not take more than one afternoon. And if you do not like the results, feel free to repeat the process.
There’s more to high-quality car insurance than just low prices. The company also needs to provide reliable customer service to be financially stable and to offer fast online tools and many discounts.
We ranked the best BMW car insurance options here, but there are even more insurers in the US that cater to different customers.
That’s why you should check our detailed and unbiased car insurance reviews of the 24 most prominent US insurers. We would also advise at our peril that you check other reputable websites too. You’ll find that the leading insurance experts often agree in general and only differ in details.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is insurance higher on BMW?
Yes, insuring a BMW is more expensive compared to the average cost of insurance in the US. However, that’s primarily because BMWs are more expensive than ordinary cars. We also found that similarly-priced Audi models cost even more to insure.
If you opt-out of full coverage by dropping collision and comprehensive, you’ll drastically reduce your premium.
How much is car insurance discount with BMW Assist?
BMW Assist is an advanced telematics system that relies on GPS and provides roadside assistance. It can also be used for vehicle diagnostics, remote unlocking, or theft recovery. These sophisticated features make your vehicle more reliable and safer, which means you’ll be able to obtain cheap insurance for BMW.
The exact discount percentage will depend on the insurer, but it usually ranges around 10% to 20% of your collision and comprehensive premium.
Are BMWs more expensive to fix?
Yes, this is correct. Since BMW’s models range from mid-range to luxury, the price of maintenance and spare parts is higher compared to other brands. That also affects the cost of BMW insurance, especially if you choose comprehensive and collision coverage.