Is Classic Car Insurance Right for Your Older Car?

Chances are, if you own a classic car, you paid a lot more for it than the original owner did many years ago.  The car is your pride and joy, and you certainly want to protect your investment.  Although you keep it in a garage, it is still susceptible to damage.  You can protect the vehicle with a classic car insurance policy.  

Insuring your classic car can be complicated, so here are some basics to help you:

What Makes a Vehicle a “Classic”?

Frequently, the terms classic, collector, vintage, or antique are often used interchangeably when referring to old cars. But, the classifications are not all the same.  For instance: 

  • Classic Cars – Typically, a vehicle that is 20 years old is considered a “classic.”  Some of the most popular classic cars are from the 50s and 60s such as Chevrolet Camaros, Ford Mustangs, Pontiac GTOs, and Dodge Chargers, to name a few.  
  • Antique Cars – Cars 25 years old or older are deemed “antiques”.  Antique cars are typically those manufactured before 1975 and restored in conformance with the original manufacturer’s specifications.  Examples of antique cars include a 1956 Porsche Speedster, a 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air, and a 1964 El Camino Coupe, among many others.
  • Vintage Cars – Vehicles built between 1919 and 1930 are known as “vintage automobiles” and are usually on display in car shows and parades.  A restored Ford Model T is a good example of a vintage automobile.
  • Collector Cars – Collector cars are well-maintained or restored vehicles that are owned as a hobby and not driven daily.  These vehicles generally increase in value. Unlike classics, antiques, or vintage vehicles, age is not a determining factor for being dubbed a collector car.  In fact, some vehicles from the 1980s and 90s have earned the distinction of being collector vehicles.  

The key differences between the classifications are price, age, and historic status.  The guidelines vary by state and your car must meet them before being issued a historic status license plate. Here in South Carolina, a car over 25 years old and owned as a collector item classifies as a classic car.  Also in SC, a classic car can only be driven to or in exhibits, parades, tours, club activities, and similar events.

Why Is Classic Car Insurance Necessary?

Insuring your classic car is different from insurance for your everyday vehicle.  For instance, a classic car will likely increase in value, while your everyday car will depreciate.  Although you don’t drive the classic car regularly, if you intend to drive it in a parade or to another type of event, you’ll need to be insured.  

Since your classic car will likely increase in value, you want to know you are adequately covered in the event of a loss.  But, as the vehicle ages, the costs of repairing or restoring will increase.  Because of this, repair costs can be more than your budget allows.  The right insurance will help reduce out-of-pocket costs if the car is damaged.

How Classic Car Insurance Differs From Regular Auto Insurance

Regular auto insurance may provide some coverage for a classic vehicle.  However, if the car has been restored or customized, it may be worth more than its depreciated value.  You should consider classic car insurance to get adequate coverage.

Classic car insurance pays the agreed value of the vehicle instead of the depreciated value (ACV) if the car is totaled. It pays for original parts to repair your vehicle if that’s what it had.  Whereas, a regular auto insurance policy would only cover repairs using aftermarket parts.  

A classic car insurance policy typically covers the following:

  • Comprehensive/Collision – Covers physical damage to the vehicle. 
  • Liability – Covers damage or injuries you cause to others or their property
  • Roadside Assistance – This coverage may include full-service such as towing, winching, jump-starting a battery, delivery of fuel, flat tire changes, and more.  

It’s important to note that if you drive your classic car every day, you should choose standard automobile insurance.

Is Insurance for Classic Cars Expensive?

Generally, classic car insurance is cheaper than regular auto insurance.  Since these vehicles spend less time on the road than one used for daily work and errands, the potential for accidents is reduced.  

Premiums for classic car insurance vary among insurers, but on average, classic car insurance costs between $400 and $1,000 per year.  Like regular auto insurance, classic car insurance premiums are based on risk factors such as driving history, driver’s age, the vehicle’s value, and location.  

Get a Classic Car Insurance Quote from Sandifer Insurance

Are you considering classic car insurance for your highly valued vehicle?  If so, we’re here to assist you.  Sandifer Insurance Agency is a family-owned company located in Cheraw, SC.  We stay up-to-date on all South Carolina insurance regulations to provide our clients with the most comprehensive coverage available.  

Sandifer Insurance has over 40 years of experience in the insurance field.  We provide reputable and reliable service to customers in Cheraw and the surrounding areas, and we look forward to helping you with your insurance needs.   

Contact us for a free quote on classic car, homeowners, auto, life, farm, or commercial insurance.  One of our agents will be available to assist you in any way.


Sources: – Classic Car Insurance: Everything You Need to Know – How Much Does Classic Car Insurance Cost?

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