Buying the best classic car insurance requires some special considerations. A typical personal auto insurance policy may not be sufficient because, unlike regular cars, classic cars gain value over time. Classic car insurance is tailored for these vehicles and their owners.
What is a "classic car"?
Some people may use the words classic, collector and vintage interchangeably. But your insurance company likely has specific definitions for these types of cars. For example, here's how State Farm defines differences:
A Classic Automobile is a motor vehicle which is 10 or more years old and which because of limited production or exceptionally fine workmanship is a rarity or of historic interest and which has been restored, maintained or preserved by classic-automobile hobbyists.
An Antique Automobile is a motor vehicle which is 25 or more years old and which has been restored, maintained or preserved by antique automobile hobbyists.
A Replica is a reproduction of an antique or classic automobile. If the vehicle is 25 or more years old, coverage will be priced as an antique.
Other insurers may not use age in their definitions. For example, American Modern Property & Casualty Insurance Co. defines collector autos as: A car or truck whose characteristics -- unique features, rarity and/or overall popularity with various generations -- raise the desirability of the vehicle above that of the common automobile.
Finding the right classic car insurance
Owners of classic cars should be aware of the type of payout offered by a policy. With a personal auto policy on a regular car, you'll get the car's "actual cash value" if it's totaled or stolen. And unlike classic cars, regular cars depreciate (lose value) every year.
So instead of payouts based only on actual cash value, a classic car insurance policy might offer:
- Stated value: Coverage is based on an amount you state when you buy the policy. You'll need documentation to back up the stated amount. However, if you have a claim, the insurer can pay you either the stated value or the actual cash value -- whichever is less.
- Agreed value: You and the insurance company agree on a value for the vehicle, likely based on appraisals and other documentation. If you have a total loss, you get the agreed value. Experts often recommend buying agreed value policies for collector cars. You can change the agreed value at renewal time to reflect new current value.
Limited use classic auto insurance
Some policies will base rates on "limited use." This generally means that you will drive the car only for exhibitions, parades, classic car club activities and related events. The car shouldn't be used for daily driving like a commute.
Classic car insurance discounts
You may be used to a variety of discounts available from your insurance company for your regular car. EverQuote reviewed state filings made by insurers and we found that antique and classic cars are often excluded from typical car insurance discounts. For example, an owner of a classic car might not be eligible for a good driving discount, good student discount, multi-car discount, multi-policy discount and others. These rules will vary by insurance company.
Classic car insurance companies
You'll find classic car insurance offered by both large insurance companies and specialty companies such as Hagerty. Here's a look at some options:.
Allstate classic car insurance
Allstate offers classic car policies through a partnership with Hagerty.
American Modern classic car insurance
American Modern offers agreed value policies. It also has some special coverage options, such as its Automobilia endorsement, which will insure historical and collector items related to collector cars such as badges, cast iron toys, hood ornaments and wall decorations.
Geico classic car insurance
Classic car policies through Geico are underwritten by either American Modern or Assurant. The policies offer agreed value coverage.
Grundy classic car insurance
Grundy Insurance offers agreed value policies from AIG. With a Grundy collector car policy you have unlimited miles for driving for pleasure or for car shows, but the car can't be used for daily driving.
Hagerty classic car insurance
Hagerty specializes in insurance for car enthusiasts, including classic, antique, military and modified vehicles. The classic car policies it offers are underwritten by Essentia Insurance Co. and Nationwide. Hagerty's "guaranteed value" policies are similar to agreed value policies.
Progressive classic car insurance
Progressive offers its customers policies through Hagerty.
State Farm classic car insurance
State Farm will cover classic cars that are used on a limited basis, such as parades and exhibitions. Classic cars must be restored and maintained, or be undergoing restoration. State Farm offers agreed value coverage.
USAA classic car insurance
USAA sells agreed value policies that may be underwritten by other companies such as American Collectors Insurance.