While insuring a modern-day motor can be simple, finding insurance for a classic car can be more tricky — especially when it comes to comparing quotes.
But finding and comparing classic car insurance is now easier than ever.
There are a few differences between vintage and classic car insurance and modern car insurance, which you should know about before embarking on any policy buying.
Unlike modern car insurance policies, vintage and classic car policies generally come in three forms: Agreed Value, Limited Mileage, and Laid Up policies.
Here’s a quick break-down of each:
A “laid up” policy is for cars that are not being used on the road and only covers theft, fire, and extreme damage from acts of God like something falling on top of the car.
However, this is handy to have if you are restoring a vintage or classic car, have it kept in storage or have your car on loan to a museum.
An agreed value policy is one of the best options for a vintage or classic car as it is based on a pre-agreed value for your vintage or classic car.
It is especially good if you have just spent a lot of hard work and hard-earned money on restoring your pride and joy back to its former glory. Most ‘agreed value’ policies also have a pre-agreed annual mileage limit as well.
Most of the values must be assessed by a qualified motor mechanic or automotive engineer to see if they agree with the valuation for the condition of your car.
Some insurance companies also require photographs of your vintage or classic car.
A limited-mileage policy is, as the name suggests, a mileage limit over an annual period.
The downfall to this type of policy is that you will only get the market value of your car if anything should happen to it.
The market value is an average value of what the vintage or classic car would sell for at an auction.
So if you went for this type of policy after restoring a car that has a market value of $3,000, and you know your car is worth $5,000, then you’re $2,000 out of hard earned money.
Limited mileage policies are generally an annual mileage of 1,000 miles per year, but you can also get them in 2,000 miles per year, 5,000 miles per year, and 10,000 miles per year variants. Again, some insurance companies may require photographs of your vehicle for this kind of policy.
Classic car insurance vs modern car insurance: Comparing quotes
Car insurance companies are plentiful but comparing car-insurance rates has been difficult.
However, there are now sites which offer comparisons for classic car insurance as well as that for modern vehicles.
One site we came across that does do comparisons for older vehicles is TheZebra.com, which can insure cars from 1981 up to the present day.
For a comparison I used my current daily driver, a modern classic — a 33 year old BMW 633 CSI Coupe.
I made a comparison based on a 33-year-old male driver, living in the Los Angeles zip code 90001, driving since 17 with no insurance claims or tickets in the past five years and a annual mileage of 6,000 miles, with the car being used for pleasure only.
The comparison quotes ranged from $76 per month to $356 per month.
My existing policy, through a well-known vintage and classic car insurance specialist with all the same details and has an agreed value of $6,500 plus a mileage of 5,000 per year, was $56.
The quotes from TheZebra.com will pay the market value of the car, whereas the agreed-upon value will guarantee I will get the true value of the car. This is something to consider if you are seeking insurance for a modern classic like mine.
To compare the price with a modern car, I used TheZebra.com again, but this time with the equivalent modern counterpart of my car — the 2016 BMW 640I Coupe, using all the same details as before.
This time the quotes ranged from $139 per month to $470 per month, which was an increase of $63 for the cheapest comparison and up $114 on the most expensive comparison.
I found TheZebra.com well laid out and very easy to use, and it’s nice for vintage and classic car owners to have the same benefit of being able to compare quotes as their modern car counterparts.
First you get asked to enter your zip code, then asked to pick the make and year of your car; and last you are directed to the comparison site itself which has many insurance companies on the left of the screen.
You can add more details about yourself, about your car and policy choice.
As you update each section on the details panel on the left, the site automatically updates, putting the lowest comparable quote at the top.