If you own a classic car it generally makes sense to choose a classic car insurance policy but if you’re worried these specialist policies could be prohibitively expensive, it’s more affordable than you think.
Defining a ‘classic car’ can be difficult. A child of the 1980s might crave a Peugeot 205, but for someone who grew up in the 1950s, that can seem very modern and not a vehicle they would define as a ‘classic’. Typically, vehicles over 10 years old would qualify for classic car insurance, however rarer and more prestigious cars are likely to be accepted from a younger age. ‘Modern classics’, in particular limited edition and high-performance cars can surpass their original values, within a few years and specialist insurance cover can prove invaluable.
Classic and high-value car insurance advisors can offer guidance on whether you would benefit from insuring your car under a specialist policy.
Generally, standard car insurance policies do not recognise the unique requirements of a classic car owner when it matters most – at the point of a claim. A classic car will require specialist repairers to retain its value and with a standard policy, you might be forced to use the insurers preferred repairer rather than you own. Some classic car owners will know their vehicle inside and out and want the flexibility to repair their vehicle themselves, in these cases cash compensation is preferable.
In contrast a classic car policy offers more detailed cover than a standard policy and a greater degree of flexibility. Cover will usually allows owners to use their cars in shows and events. There are sometimes options to retain any salvageable parts in the unfortunate case of a total loss (but obviously only if the salvage is safe to reuse) and these policies give freedom to car owners to choose their preferred garage for repairs. Some insurers will also offer the option for owners to use a sporty model during competitive track day events.
There are key reasons why classic car insurance is generally more affordable than people expect. In the experience of insurers, classic car owners take better care of their vehicle, drivers often have a strong attachment to their vehicle’s unique character and tend to be more cautious and careful out on the road; the difficulties of finding replacement parts and the cost of repairing these cars also plays a role in how people look after these cars. Classic car insurance policies will also usually limit mileage because owners tend not to use their car for everyday journeys, less time spent on the road means there is less chance of being involved in an accident and premiums can be kept at a lower level.
Another way owners can keep their premiums even lower is by joining a car club. It demonstrates to insurers that a driver who is keen to join a car club is serious about understanding their vehicle and interested in taking care of their prized possession.
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