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How Much Does a Tesla Cost to Own and Insure?

Alexa Goyette

The future is here! As automation is becoming mainstream, the thought of our present turning into the futuristic worlds as seen in Westworld and Black Mirror isn’t completely far-fetched. Leading the way in the commercialization of automated products are the self-driving cars by Tesla.

The current 2 Tesla models, the Model S and the Model X, have gained recognition as the self-driving car initiative has gained popularity. In recent years, Tesla sales have skyrocketed, showing auto distributors that people worldwide are digging Elon Musk’s eco-friendly, forward-thinking brand.

These luxury vehicles don’t run cheap, however. Though a lot of consumers admire the brand’s green technologies, many can’t afford the ticket price. Other plug-ins, like the Nissan Leaf, are more on the radars of people with a tight budget. But the Tesla – with its sleek look and iconic marketing strategies – still beckon those with even the tightest budgets. Owning and insuring a Tesla has its drawbacks and its perks economically; while the ticket price and insurance rates are steep, some of its green initiatives actually bring some of the costs down.

More: Cheapest cars to insure

How much does it cost?

The Tesla Model S ranges in price from $68,000 to $134,500, while the Model X ranges from $85,500-$135,500. You’re probably wondering why there’s such a big difference in prices among the same model. The trim number is the reason for these large gaps. Higher trim numbers, which result in a more expensive model, make the vehicle reach faster speeds and improve the quality of the car battery. These prices only include the car itself. Any additional features – like the famous Autopilot – would cost extra to install.

Added features can range from $1,000 (for the subzero weather package) to $5,000 (for the automated driving enhancement). You can either include these add-ons when you’re ordering your Tesla from the website or dealership or you can upgrade the vehicle over time. If you’re looking to save a little money, it’s recommended to add these features on when you’re purchasing the vehicle.

How much do Teslas cost to insure?

Although the insurance rates range by city, the Model S and Model X have estimated costs in big cities. The Model S has an estimated average cost of $2,691 per year and the Model X costs an average of $2,784 per year. Small towns will cost a bit less to insure this vehicle than in large cities.

As most auto insurance policies go, these prices will increase depending on your marital status and driving record. For instance, a married 30-year-old woman will have a cheaper rate than a single woman of the same age, while a 50-year-old male with a clean driving history will have a better rate than a 50-year-old male who has a history of accidents.

Auto insurers that cover Teslas usually recommend investing in both comprehensive and collision insurance, as Teslas can be very expensive to repair. Damage repairs on Teslas can cost upwards of twice the costs of traditional sedans, since the prices of Tesla car parts are pricy.

More: How much is car insurance?

Are there perks to driving an electric car?

There sure are! To start with, you won’t need to buy gas anymore once you own a Tesla, as they are charged through electricity. Although charging a Tesla involves the use of a lot of electricity, you’ll probably spend about 50% of the amount you’d normally be spending on gas.

You might even be able to get a tax rebate if you own a Tesla, but only for a short period. A lot of states offer tax breaks to Tesla owners, since they are making use of electric vehicles. At the moment, all U.S. states give up to a $7,500 tax break to anyone that drives an electric car. However, this incentive will eventually be phased out now that Teslas are becoming increasingly popular, especially as the brand releases more new models.

Maybe the costs of the Model S and Model X are a little steep. Before you count this brand out, take a look at the Model 3, the newest release from Tesla, which will come out at the end of 2017. Hundreds of thousands of people are already on its waiting list, but with good reason; at an affordable price of $37,495, consumers that can’t afford the more luxurious models can still have their own self-driving cars. If you want to be a Tesla owner but can’t make too steep of an investment, check out how you can reserve a Model 3.