The Cadillac Escalade is the most popular luxury car in the U.S., according to a ValuePenguin analysis of search volume around well-known luxury car brands.
In fact, the Escalade was the most searched-for car model in 10 states. The number of Escalade queries has gradually increased since the start of COVID-19 lockdowns last year, still eclipsing pre-pandemic figures.
Alongside Cadillac's Escalade, three other models — Audi's R8, BMW's i8 and the Land Rover Defender — made up more than half (27 of 50 states) of the most searched-for luxury models in the U.S.
- The Cadillac Escalade was the most popular high-end car across 10 states, while no other car topped six states.
- Four cars — the Cadillac Escalade, Audi R8, BMW i8 and Land Rover Defender — account for the most searched luxury models in more than half of the country.
- The most popular cars varied by region: the Mercedes-Benz GLC in the Northeast; the Escalade and Jaguar F-Pace in the Midwest; the Defender and R8 in the West; and the Escalade in the South.
- The Defender is the most affordable vehicle to insure among the four most popular high-end models, while the Buick Enclave is the cheapest to insure of all cars in our study. It's more expensive to insure the smaller, more sporty BMW and Audi models.
The most searched-for luxury cars in every state
The Cadillac Escalade was the most popular luxury vehicle in the past year, according to search volume. In 10 states, the Escalade represented the largest share of searches relative to any one of the other cars included in this study. For context, the second-highest-ranking car was a tie between the Audi R8 and BMW i8 sports cars. These were the most searched-for in six states.
In total, four vehicles — the Escalade, R8, i8 and Defender — topped the list for the most popular car in 27 states. That’s two sports cars and two SUVs, but no sedans.
Conversely, five car models were most searched-for in only one state each. These were the Maserati Ghibli, Tesla Model S, Porsche 911, Bentley Bentayga and Lexus RX 350. Still, these models were the most popular of their respective makers' luxury catalogs.
While the Escalade was the most popular car over the course of the past year, the most searched-for model varied by region.
The Escalade was the most popular car in the South, leading searches in six states in the region. Meanwhile, the Escalade tied the F-Pace for the Midwest lead (three states apiece). In the West, the R8 and Defender reigned supreme (three states), while the Mercedes-Benz GLC topped two Northeast states.
Most searched vehicle
|Alaska||Land Rover Defender|
|California||Tesla Model S, Porsche 911, BMW i8|
|Connecticut||Lexus RX 350 F, Aston Martin Vantage|
|Delaware||Alfa Romeo Giulia|
|District of Columbia||Alfa Romeo Giulia|
|Florida||Alfa Romeo Giulia|
|Georgia||Genesis GV80, BMW i8|
The most searched-for luxury vehicles in the country were SUVs, with a handful of sedans and sports cars
Search data related to 20 models reveals that more than half of the most popular luxury vehicles in the past year were SUVs. Following SUVs, sedans and sports cars made up the other most popular models, according to search volume.
States where model was most searched for
SUVs were the most popular models (or tied for most popular) in 33 states. The most popular high-end vehicle overall — the Escalade — was the most searched-for model in 10 states alone. Despite the fact that only four of the most searched-for luxury cars were sports vehicles, these types of cars were the most popular in 15 of 50 states. Finally, sedan-style cars were the most popular in 10 states, the fewest of any one type of vehicle.
High-end sports cars are far more expensive to insure than luxury SUVs and sedans
The cost of car insurance depends on a variety of factors, including one's personal driving history, location, credit score and, not least of all, type of vehicle. ValuePenguin examined the impact that different types of cars can have on the cost of insurance.
Although every type of vehicle we surveyed could be classified as a luxury model, there was still a disparity in expected car insurance premiums across cars. For instance, SUVs were consistently cheaper to insure than sedans or sports cars.
The Enclave SUV was the cheapest model to insure. It’s followed by seven SUVs before the first sedan, the GLC, appears on the list of most affordable luxury cars to insure. On the other hand, the 911, R8 and i8 sports cars were three of the four most expensive to insure. In fact, the Audi and BMW models were the second-most and most expensive cars to insure among those we were able to gather quotes for.
Annual rates displayed
ValuePenguin used Google Trends search data to compile this study. To map popularity, we localized searches by state and compared the shares of searches for each car model. To determine which car models to include, we isolated the most popular model by maker using keyword research software.
For example, preliminary research revealed that the Escalade was the most searched-for Cadillac, so it was included. The regions referenced in the study align with the U.S. Census Bureau’s designations. We gathered insurance rates for the 2021 models of the cars mentioned in the study — aside from the Rolls-Royce Phantom, Aston Martin Vantage and Bentley Bentayga due to technical limitations.
ValuePenguin's analysis used insurance rate data from Quadrant Information Services. These rates were publicly sourced from insurer filings and should be used for comparative purposes only, as your quotes may be different.