Does car colour really affect insurance premiums?

There’s a chance you’ve heard murmurings or even read theories online about how car colour affects insurance. A quick Google search on the subject will bring up lots of articles, reports and questions on how a splash of paint could make your wheels more or less likely to be stolen or involved in an accident.

Let’s try and make sense of it all.

It ain’t easy being a green car

In the years between 2011/12 and 2015/16, the number of green cars stolen increased dramatically. That’s according to the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council’s 2017 report ‘Theft Matters.’ 

In fact, surprisingly the research showed that green cars had the highest theft rate and black cars the second. Although the motives for stealing a car in the first place also had some bearing on the statistics. For example, according to the research a green Holden Commodore VT was more likely to be the victim of a short term theft, while a black Holden Commodore VT was more likely to be stolen for a profit. In other words, someone looking for a quick getaway vehicle after a bank heist might go for green, while someone else looking for a car to resell and make some money off, might opt for black.

The visibility index

When it comes to car colour and crash risk, light conditions are an important factor. 

In a 2007 report from the Monash University Accident Research Centre, it was revealed that cars lower on the visibility index were at a higher crash risk in lower light. So, black, blue, grey, green, red and silver cars were a higher risk at dawn, dusk or even during the night.

The report found that no other car colour was statistically safer than white. Although the type of car also threw up some variations in the results. 

Mozo’s car quote research

As part of Mozo’s 2020 car insurance report, we looked at the average insurance quote for different car colours.

As you can see black cars were quoted the highest on average for insurance, while green cars were the lowest. While this could be to do with a higher theft rate for black cars, we can’t really speculate. 

However, after looking at these statistics and reports, it is clear that there is some correlation between car colour and theft and accident risk. Although it is important to remember that car colour is just one of many factors that could influence these things. Others are how safely you drive and where you park your car at night. 

Perhaps if you have your eye on a particular model of car and colour, consider doing some research first. Find out what the car theft stats are on it and whether or not it has a reputation for being at a higher crash risk. 

Lastly, if you are paying a lot for car insurance, why not shop around and see if you could get a better deal. Take a look at the comprehensive car insurance policies below to get started.

Compare comprehensive car insurance - last updated February 27, 2021

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