21st Century Auto Insurance Review 2023

Kayda Norman
By Kayda Norman 

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Our Take


NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line:

21st Century sells bare-bones auto insurance policies in California only.

21st Century Auto Insurance - Direct
NAIC complaints
More than expected
Ease of use
Above average
Average set of discounts

Pros & Cons


  • Complimentary roadside assistance.
  • Up to $1,000 of equipment coverage included for customers that buy comprehensive or collision insurance.


  • Available only in California.
  • Few optional coverages offered.
  • Few discounts offered.

Full Review

21st Century earned 3 stars out of 5 for overall performance. NerdWallet’s ratings are determined by our editorial team. The scoring formula takes into account consumer experience, complaint data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and financial strength ratings.

Founded in 1958, 21st Century Insurance is a small subsidiary of Farmers Insurance and currently only offers auto insurance policies in California. It does most of its business online and over the phone, so 21st Century is best for people who are fine with not having a personal agent.

Why you can trust NerdWallet: Our writers and editors follow strict editorial guidelines to ensure fairness and accuracy in our coverage so you can choose the insurance policy that works best for you. These carrier ratings are specific to auto insurance — a company's rating for other products may be different on our site. See our criteria for evaluating auto insurance companies.

In our auto insurance reviews, our editorial team considers both the customer and the insurer. These are some of the factors we take into account:

Financial strength. We use A.M. Best ratings to confirm an insurer’s long-term financial stability and ability to pay claims. NerdWallet does not recommend companies with a rating lower than a B. 

Complaints. These ratings are based on complaints to state regulators relative to a company’s size, according to three years’ worth of data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. The best auto insurance companies have fewer than the expected number of complaints.

Ease of use. This category looks at how easily consumers can interact with an insurer through its mobile app and website. This includes how much coverage information is offered online, whether a user can start and track a claim online and get a quote and mobile app scores based on the Apple and Google Play store ratings.

Discounts. We look at both the kind of discounts a company offers and the total number of discounts available.

21st Century auto insurance coverage

When you're shopping for car insurance coverage, it's important to understand what car insurance coverage you want and what you’re required to buy. For instance, most states require a minimum amount of car insurance to drive a vehicle. Alternatively, if you want extra protection, you may be interested in full coverage insurance. Read about the most common types of car insurance coverage to see how they work.

21st Century offers few bells and whistles with its auto policies, something that may help keep rates down. Besides the typical types of coverage offered, 21st Century provides complimentary roadside assistance as well as up to $1,000 of equipment coverage if you buy comprehensive or collision insurance.

21st Century also offers new car replacement coverage if you have a newer vehicle for an extra fee. This coverage pays the value of a new car of the same make and model if your car is totaled in an accident.

Auto insurance discounts

You may be able to save on your 21st Century auto insurance policy by:

  • Owning a car with an anti-theft device.

  • Maintaining a B average in school if you are 25 years old or younger.

  • Having a student who is away at school and keeps their car at home.

  • Being an alumni from certain organizations.

  • Insuring more than one vehicle.

  • Taking a defensive driving course if you are at least 55 years old.

  • Being claim-free for three years (good driver).

  • Having no claims after four or more years. You can earn this discount in addition to the good driver discount.

🤓Nerdy Tip

First time shopping for auto insurance? Unsure of where to start? Check out our guide on how to shop for car insurance.


21st Century had more than the expected number of complaints about auto insurance to state regulators relative to its size, according to three years’ worth of data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

More about 21st Century auto insurance

Website: Though they don’t have the slick features you’ll find on some other insurers’ digital platforms, 21st Century’s website lets you accomplish the basics. You can pay premiums, view your insurance ID card and file claims via the website. If you need help, you can. If you need help, you can reach customer service at 877-401-8181, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. PT, Monday through Friday.

Other insurance from 21st Century

21st Century exclusively sells auto policies in California. But its parent company, Farmers, offers car insurance in most states as well as most other types of coverage.

To learn more, check out our other Farmers reviews:


Insurer complaints methodology

NerdWallet examined complaints received by state insurance regulators and reported to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in 2019-2021. To assess how insurers compare to one another, the NAIC calculates a complaint index each year for each subsidiary, measuring its share of total complaints relative to its size, or share of total premiums in the industry. To evaluate a 21st Century’s complaint history, NerdWallet calculated a similar index for each insurer, weighted by market shares of each subsidiary, over the three-year period. NerdWallet conducts its data analysis and reaches conclusions independently and without the endorsement of the NAIC. Ratios are determined separately for auto, home (including renters and condo) and life insurance.

Auto insurance ratings methodology

NerdWallet’s auto insurance ratings reward companies for customer-first features and practices. Ratings are based on weighted averages of scores in several categories, including financial strength, consumer complaints and discounts. Our “ease of use” category looks at factors such as website transparency and how easy it is to file a claim. Using our editorial discretion, we also consider customer satisfaction surveys. These ratings are a guide, but we encourage you to shop around and compare several insurance quotes to find the best rate for you. NerdWallet does not receive compensation for any reviews. Read our editorial guidelines and full ratings methodology for auto insurance.

Frequently asked questions