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Is Classic Car Insurance Different Than Standard Car Insurance?

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You can technically get standard auto insurance for a classic or collectible car. But it’s not always the best idea, as classic auto coverage is different from standard car insurance for a reason. You’ll likely spend more on standard insurance for a classic or antique car than you would for classic car coverage.

To understand why you should get classic car coverage, take a closer look at the differences between the two types of auto insurance.

If you’re in the market for providers that offer classic car insurance, our team of experts have carefully analyzed all the best car insurance companies that can fit your needs. We also offer a quote box that provides you with free auto insurance quotes from local insurers. Enter your zip code to get started.

Both Classic and Standard Car Insurance Will Have Full Coverage

Whether you get classic car coverage or standard auto insurance, you will have liability coverage with available comprehensive and collision coverage. Between these three, your insurance will cover injuries caused by accidents involving the car and damage to the car from accidents and other causes, like vandalism or severe weather.

How are Vehicles Valued with Classic and Standard Insurance?

One of the biggest differences between standard and classic car insurance is how the insurer values the auto.

Standard Car Insurance

The typical method of calculating the value for standard insurance involves considering the initial value of the vehicle – in other words, what you originally paid for it. Insurers then consider all value lost from mileage, depreciation and age. It doesn’t matter if the auto has increased in market value or has become a more popular model over the years.

Given that classic cars are older, insurance companies tend to claim their value as fairly low. This is despite the fact that many classic vehicles now cost tens of thousands more than they originally did. Standard insurance also won’t account for any restorations or repairs you made to the car that increased its value.

This is bad news when it comes to claims. If your car is totaled, you would get much less than it’s worth. Even if your classic car is just damaged, you may not get enough to cover repairs, especially if it requires specialty parts.

Classic Car Insurance

By contrast, most classic car insurance policies allow both you and the insurer to agree on the value of the vehicle. This means that it will be much closer to what you believe is its true value. Classic coverage also lets you account for an increase in value due to restoration. In other words, you will be fairly reimbursed for claims or if the auto becomes a total loss.

Differences in Mileage Limits

Another major difference is how much you can drive your car. While your mileage may affect your insurance premium on standard auto insurance policies, it will not automatically disqualify you. By contrast, classic car coverage typically has a mileage limit of around 5,000 to 10,000 miles a year.

Differences in the Cars That Qualify

There are also differences in how autos qualify for coverage with each type of insurance. Most cars should have easy eligibility for regular car insurance, perhaps with the exception of those with salvage titles. But classic auto coverage typically has a minimum age requirement.

Depending on the insurance provider, the car will need to be about 10 to 15 years old – maybe even older for some insurance companies that classify certain vehicles as antique cars. While any auto can qualify, some insurance carriers will require you to have a clean driving record to get classic car coverage.

Differences in Cost

Getting classic car insurance costs are typically less than standard coverage rates for your auto, due largely to the mileage limits. Simply put, the less time you spend behind the wheel, the less likely it is that you’ll be involved in an accident and have to make a claim. Even with differences in the vehicle’s value (and the effect of value on premiums), classic car coverage costs are more affordable because of this mileage limit.

Where Can I Get Classic Car Insurance?

There are several major providers that offer classic auto insurance policies through classic car insurance companies. Progressive offers policies through Hagerty Insurance. USAA offers it through American Collectors Insurance. Other well-received classic car insurance companies are Grundy, American Modern and Heacock Classic Insurance. Heacock is underwritten by American Modern.

These insurance companies are well experienced in providing classic car insurance coverage and spare parts coverage for collector vehicles, and some in military vehicles, motorcycles and more. Many of them also offer special benefits like trip interruption, roadside assistance, towing services and car show expense reimbursement.

Our Recommendations for Major Provider Auto Insurance

Whether you are insuring a classic car or a standard auto, we suggest GEICO, USAA or Progressive for your auto insurance. Comparing car insurance quotes will always be easiest with the help of a comparison tool, like our quote box. Enter your zip code to start comparing free quotes from major providers.

GEICO: 9.1/10

GEICO is our pick for the Best Overall option of all auto insurance providers we analyzed. The company is known to give some of the industry’s lowest rates, several opportunities for discounts and even add-on classic car insurance. GEICO sells policies for classic car owners through American Modern insurance. With GEICO, you can also add:

  • Rideshare coverage
  • Roadside assistance
  • Rental reimbursement
  • Mechanical breakdown insurance

USAA: 9.6/10

USAA is our experts’ pick for the Best Military Provider since it services only members of the military, veterans and their families. You can supplement your standard insurance from USAA with classic car insurance through American Collectors. Aside from offering the best deals on premiums, USAA also offers:

  • Gap insurance
  • Accident forgiveness 
  • Rental reimbursement
  • Roadside assistance
  • Rideshare coverage

Progressive: 9.1/10

Progressive gets our Best for High-Risk Drivers award and a high rating for many reasons. If you have a record that classifies you as a high-risk driver, you may find it a challenge to get the best deals. This is where Progressive comes into the picture for you. The company also offers classic car policies through Hagerty, a provider that specializes in collector car insurance. In addition to classic car coverage, Progressive also offers:

  • Loan/lease payoffs
  • A deductible savings bank
  • Custom parts value
  • Accident forgiveness
  • Rideshare coverage
  • Roadside assistance

Read more: Progressive insurance review

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