Finder is committed to editorial independence. While we receive compensation when you click links to partners, they do not influence our opinions or reviews. Learn how we make money.
NZI Car Insurance
Enjoy a choice of cover from one of New Zealand’s largest insurance brands.
NZI offers a solid selection of car insurance policies, including comprehensive, third-party fire and theft, and third-party only, to cover you against all common motoring risks. You can also opt for the top-of-the-line Distinction policy and enjoy complimentary roadside assistance.
Voted Insurer of the Year by the Insurance Brokers Association of New Zealand many times over, NZI has a long-standing market presence in New Zealand. The company does not sell policies directly to customers; you can only buy an NZI policy via an insurance broker.
What cover options does NZI offer?
NZI offers two types of motor insurance policy. The Distinction Motor Vehicle policy is the company’s premium comprehensive cover. Or, you can opt for the more practical Echelon Motor Vehicle cover, which provides a choice of comprehensive, third-party fire and theft, or third-party only cover.
NZI’s Distinction policy includes perks such as unlimited roadside assistance. You also get all the other benefits you would expect from a comprehensive policy, including:
- Full cover for loss due to theft or fire
- Full cover for loss if your car is in an accident
- Legal liability cover, in case you cause an accident that results in a loss to someone else’s property, or injury to another person
- The cost of transporting your car after an accident
- Cover for accidental death or disablement, up to $10,000
- Accommodation costs if your car can no longer be driven
- A rental vehicle if your car is under repair
- Cover for road clearing costs after an accident
- Full cover for a trailer in case of loss or theft
- Up to $1,000 for trauma counselling after an accident
- Legal defence costs if you are charged with manslaughter, up to $10,000
NZI’s Echelon Full Cover option is also a comprehensive policy, and includes the following:
- Cover if your car is stolen
- Cover if there is total loss or damage to your car after an accident
- Cover for legal liability in case you are at fault in an accident that causes loss or physical injury to another party
- Up to $10,000 for accidental death or disablement as a result of an accident
- Up to $750 for accommodation if you cannot drive your car home after an accident
- Alternative transport while your car is under repair; you must contribute $20 per day
- Up to $1,000 to replace keys and locks if your keys are lost or stolen
- Medical expenses cover of up to $500
- Towing costs to retrieve your car to a repairer or place of safety after an accident
Save on your premiums when you apply for an NZI Echelon policy with third party, fire and theft cover only.
Under this policy your cover includes:
- Legal liability cover where you are at fault in an accident that causes physical injury or loss of property to another person
- Cover for loss due to theft or fire damage
- Up to $3,000 if your car is in an accident, it is not your fault and the other driver is uninsured
- Costs to move your car to a nearby repairer or place of safety, after an accident
If you prefer to pay the minimum in premiums and just want third-party cover, consider the NZI Echelon Third Party Only policy which includes:
- Legal liability cover if you are in an accident which is your fault and which leads to loss or physical injury to another party
- Compensation of up to $3,000 if you are in an accident not caused by you and the other driver is uninsured
What is generally excluded in NZI policies?
Each NZI policy has slightly different exclusions. However, you can generally expect the following to be excluded:
- Claims where your car was used to carry a fare-paying passenger
- Hauling or towing plants, machinery or goods related to a trade
- Using your car for certain trades such as real estate, insurance broking and courier services
- Using your car for testing or trial purposes
- Driving your car on a race track or using it to participate in a race
- Loss due to wear and tear or any mechanical breakdown not related to an accident
- Claims where the driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs while driving
- When your car has been modified and this has not been cleared with NZI
- Loss due to wars, terrorism or nuclear attacks or accidents
- When your car was driven by someone without a valid driving licence, unless the car was stolen
How much excess will I pay?
The excess you pay on a claim depends on the individual policy. Some levels of cover have special exceptions:
- Excess protection. You won’t be charged an excess if your car suffers damage and the damage is the fault of another driver. Your excess is also protected if your car is stolen while equipped with a professionally-fitted or manufacturer-installed immobiliser.
- Keys and locks. A $100 excess is charged for any claims made for replacing keys or locks.
- Trailer cover. Claims made with respect to your trailer carry a $100 excess.
- Window and driving light damage. No excess is applicable to claims limited to windscreen, window or driving light damage.
How to save on your NZI car insurance policy
- Economise on cover. Choose a third-party or third-party fire and theft policy in the Echelon range to reduce the amount you pay towards premiums.
- Practise safe driving. Avoiding accidents means you will keep your no claim discount for longer.
- Skip the extras. Avoid adding extras such as roadside assistance to your policy, as this will increase your premiums.
How do I make a claim?
NZI policies are only sold via brokers and your claim will also be processed by your broker. You can download claim forms from the NZI website, but your claims contact will be your broker. Make sure you keep the following in mind when making a claim:
- Inform NZI of any accident or theft as soon as possible
- Notify the police if you think the loss was due to an illegal act
- Allow NZI to inspect your car if it requests to do so
- Immediately inform NZI if you are charged with an offence as a result of the accident
Other benefits of choosing insurance from NZI
There is a range of other benefits you can enjoy if you buy your insurance from NZI. Depending on your choice of policy you could benefit from the following:
- New replacement. If you purchase comprehensive cover, NZI will replace your car if it is uneconomical to repair and is less than 12 months old.
- Roadside assistance. A Distinction policy includes complimentary roadside assistance with no cap on the number of call-outs. Echelon policies include the option to add roadside assistance for an additional fee.
- Repair guarantee. Repairs made through NZI’s network of approved repairers are covered by a quality guarantee for as long as you own the car.
More guides on Finder
What is the S&P 500 and how can I invest in it from New Zealand?
Find out the different ways you can invest in the S&P 500 index from New Zealand.
Where to buy cycling clothing gear online in New Zealand
With Tour De France just around the bend (yes, pun intended) we’ve pulled together a comprehensive guide of what should be in your shopping cart before the day’s out.
Where to buy sleeping bags online in New Zealand
Whether you’re camping in the backyard, crashing at your mate’s or heading on a hiking trip, grab a new sleeping bag from one of these online retailers.
1 in 10 Kiwis don’t lock their doors
Thousands of Kiwis may be putting themselves at increased risk of being burgled according to new research by Finder. A recent survey of 2,001 respondents found that 1 in 10 Kiwis don’t lock their door
Kiwi Car Loans review
Borrow up to $500,000 for your new vehicle, caravan, boat or motorcycle with a secured or unsecured finance from Kiwi Car Loans.
Car finance for work visa holders
When you’re a temporary resident in New Zealand, you want to see everything, which can be difficult without a car. Luckily there are some lenders that consider car loans for people on a work or study visa. Find out how to apply here.
Understanding money – a young person’s guide
Our teenagers’ guide to money answers some common questions about money and finance.
20 top money tips for students
Be smart with your money while you get your qualification with these top student money tips.
Disability Allowance – a guide
A guide to Work and Income’s Disability Allowance. Find out who’s eligible, what it covers and how to apply.