High-performance car insurance

If you drive a high performance car and need to find the best car insurance, compare your options.

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If you have a need for speed, standard car insurance policies won’t cut it. Regular cover is simply not enough to cover the speed, parts and repair costs of your sports cars and other high-powered vehicles. Though insurance companies do take into consideration any additional safety features and how much you drive your car.

If you own a high-performance car, chances are you have invested endless time and money into making it the perfect car. Take the time to find the best protection for your investment.

What is high-performance car insurance?

What does it mean to have a high-performance car? The speed, parts and model of the car will determine if you need coverage beyond your basic insurance. If your car has any of the following features, you’ll need to find additional coverage:

  • A reprogrammed or chipped engine control unit (ECU).
  • Wheel modifications that affect performance, such as custom sizes.
  • Upgraded or sports car exhaust.
  • Lowered, raised or otherwise modified suspension.
  • Nonstandard brake pads or other brake modifications.
  • Nonstandard supercharged engines, nitro or hydrogen fuel equipped engines or any other engine modifications.
  • Racing harnesses, roll bars or roll cages.
  • Modifications to the transmission.
  • Custom fuel systems.
  • Adjustments to the steering.

Many purely cosmetic or luxury modifications can be covered by a range of insurers, but you might need to find a specialist high-performance vehicle insurer to cover performance-enhancing modifications, or anything that affects your car’s handling. Naturally, modifications must be legal in order to get them insured and included in the car’s value.

What high-performance insurance covers

High-performance coverage provides a range of benefits that you’re often unable to find with standard policies.

  • Car value. High-performance vehicles generally don’t lose value to depreciation like standard cars. Agreed value is available as an option with many policies, but it tends to be the default for high-performance driving-enthusiast policies.
  • Salvage retention rights. If your vehicle ends up being written off, you have the option to buy back the salvage instead of letting the insurer take it and sell it as scrap as tends to happen with standard policies.
  • Your choice of mechanic. You don’t have to hand your car off to the insurer’s mechanic, who might not have the skills to make the necessary repairs. You can choose your own mechanic and make sure the repairs are done right.
  • Extra replacement benefits. Standard policies may not have the replacement benefits that you need. The length of time coverage is offered such as up to one or two years is typical in a standard policy. Performance car insurance policies can offer replacement terms of three or four years, including cover for on-road costs for the year following replacement or other benefits specific to your performance insurance providers.
  • Modifications cover. Anytime you make improvements or modifications to your car, they can be recognised as part of the car’s value. Some standard insurers might refuse to cover performance-affecting modifications, but insurers for high-performance vehicles often will.

What is agreed value?

Agreed value is how much you and your insurer agree your car is worth. This number is locked in at the time of purchase, and can only be changed at certain times. This is especially useful for heavily high- performance, modified or classic cars, but generally costs more.

How to find the right high-performance cover

Your two main cover options are standard car insurance providers or specialists. The more cost-effective option will often depend on the model and driving ability of your car, coupled with how often you drive it.

Standard insurers. Many providers have policies for special vehicles, such as imports, classics or modified cars policies that might be enough for you. You might consider standard insurers for the following reasons:

  • You have no performance-enhancing modifications on your car, only cosmetic or comfort ones.
  • You don’t drive on race tracks, in competitions or in other events.
  • You use the car for everyday use and can’t benefit from features like “laid-up discounts” and other collector-focused benefits.
  • Your car is not a grey import (Grey imports don’t conform to EU standards and therefore might not meet UK safety or emissions standards. Parallel imports however do usually conform to EU standards and are therefore likely to meet UK safety or emissions standards).

Specialist insurers. These providers focus on high-performance cars that do more than simply get you to work. This coverage can allow you to race on tracks and will cover you for modifications done to your car. You might consider a specialist insurer for the following reasons:

  • You intend to drive your car on a race track.
  • Your car is unique or has been modified for speed.
  • You want the security of high-performance cover to match your car.

Tips for for insuring for your high-performance car

  • Document. In the case of a claim, you want to be able to prove the value of your car through photos or receipts of parts and labour for modifications. This will come in handy if you have to challenge a claim made by your insurance.
  • Discounts. Look for discounts offered by insurance companies such as laid-up cover, low milage and pay-as-you-go options. Some insurance companies offer discounts for insuring more than one car through them and bonuses for not making any claims.
  • Safety features. Insurance companies are looking for the least amount of risk when determining cover. By adding features such as car alarms, detection devices as well as restricting the age and number of drivers of your car, you can lower your risk.

Frequently asked questions

The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products we can track; we don't cover every product on the market...yet. Unless we've indicated otherwise, products are shown in no particular order or ranking. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations), aren't product ratings, although we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it; this is subject to our terms of use. When making a big financial decision, it's wise to consider getting independent financial advice, and always consider your own financial circumstances when comparing products so you get what's right for you.
*51% of consumers could save £200. To get this figure, aggregator Seopa selected quotes from popular providers and others, weighting according to market share, and compared the cheapest with the cheapest on its system. Your savings will depend on your own circumstances.

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