Maintaining a car can be a very expensive venture if you are not careful. From annual inspection and periodic upkeep to keeping the car fueled and insured, owning a car can easily deplete your bank account and leave you strapped for cash. One major cost associated with owning a car is paying for car insurance. Depending on where you live in the United States, car insurance could either be a small expense or take a dramatic toll on your budget. Here is a look at five of the most expensive cities in America for car insurance.

Detroit
According to an article released by Yahoo! in January 2012, Detroit, Mich. has the highest car insurance premiums on average in the U.S. The Motor City's insurance rates are most unfriendly to cash-strapped car owners. According to Runzheimer International, the average car insurance premium in Detroit was $5,941 in 2011. That's nearly $2,000 more than the runner-up. The Motor City is filled to the brim with automobiles, and as a result of the high population of citizens and cars, along with a no-fault insurance system, its insurance premiums have stayed among the highest in the country.

Philadelphia
Philadelphia, Pa. is another city that is hit hard by high car insurance costs. Coming in just behind Detroit, the City of Brotherly Love is not feeling the love in regards to its high premium costs. In 2011, the average car insurance policy cost drivers $4,076, according to Runzheimer International. The cost is not nearly as high as Detroit's astronomical average premium of $5,941, but is considerably higher than the approximate $1,199 national average that HomeInsurance.com reported for December 2011. Due to Philadelphia's overcrowded streets and high population of vehicles, insurance rates have continued to climb.

New Orleans
Another American city that definitely gets the short end of the stick when it comes to saving on auto insurance is New Orleans, La. The Big Easy has one of the most expensive car insurance premiums in the U.S. According to a Runzheimer International study performed in 2011, New Orleans had an average car insurance premium rate of $3,599 in 2011. New Orleans' high premiums are not due to overcrowding but because of judicial ruling. In Louisiana, only claims totaling over $50,000 actually make it to a jury case. Claims less than that benchmark are settled out of court.
Miami
Miami, Fla. is another U.S. city that was unable to escape high auto insurance premium rates. The Runzheimer International study performed in 2011 marked the average car insurance premium in Miami at a hefty $3,388. Due to the city's no-fault auto insurance rule and an influx of fraudulent claims, Miami has experienced a significant premium hike in recent years.

Newark, N.J.
Last but certainly not least, Newark, N.J. has one of the highest car insurance premium averages in the U.S. The city features an average auto insurance premium of $2,867. Newark's residents certainly have quite a hefty expense in order to keep their vehicles insured. Similar to Miami and Detroit, New Jersey has a no-fault insurance rule, and costs have risen as a result.

The Bottom Line
Car insurance premiums vary substantially depending upon where you live. States with no-fault laws and higher populations are prone to have higher average auto insurance premiums due to the higher amount of accidents and collisions that occur. The numbers presented are based off studies, and it is possible to find less expensive auto insurance. Many factors apply when determining what your auto insurance rate is, including driver safety, your zip code and your age. Shop carefully when buying car insurance, and make sure you are getting the best rate possible.

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