Does it cost more to insure a sports car?

Heavy on horsepower–but often light on fuel efficiency–sports cars have played a significant role in automotive culture since Ferdinand Porsche was credited with designing one of the first, The “Prince Henry Vauxhall” in 1910. In America, Ford, Chrysler and General Motors have produced dozens of  sports and “muscle” cars which have infiltrated American culture as a symbol of freedom, success and excitement through their depiction in movies, advertisements, showrooms and on the streets.  The sight and sound of a sleek car makes us think the person driving that vehicle is, well, pretty cool. So let’s take a look at what would happen if a sedan driver were to (yes, upgrade) to a slightly used Chevy Corvette Z06 V8 as a 40th birthday (mid-life crisis *cough cough*) present.

What factors would affect the insurance premium of a sports car?

Revved up horsepower can mean higher insurance premiums. Insurance companies take several factors into consideration:

  • High performance car parts are often more expensive. If you are in an accident, getting the right parts, which may be in limited production, is likely going to cost more than parts for a car that is mass produced.
  • With extra power comes more risk, a word that will have your insurance underwriter cringing. Can the average driver go from safely commanding a 150 horsepower vehicle to one that has 400+ horsepower?
  • Is this a second car? Typically, if you drive your car for 4,000 miles per year or less, insurance companies may consider you to be lower risk than those who drive more miles
  • Advanced safety features are typically lacking on a sports cars, especially older ones. A 1969 Corvette has no airbags, no crumple zones, no multi-point seat belts and no OnStar®, which can automatically contact emergency services after an accident.
  • How about theft? Sports cars have a higher rate of being stolen over regular vehicles so that puts your new wheels at extra risk. According to Forbes.com, more than one out of every 10 Corvettes sold over the past three decades is said have been stolen at least once.

So what’s the bottom line?

Let’s take “Jeff”–a 40 year old male living in Los Angeles, CA, who lives in a house and has another driver on his policy. He plans on garaging the Corvette and will purchase the following insurance coverage: Bodily Injury Liability Limits of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident, Property Damage Limits of $25,000 per accident, Uninsured Motorist coverage equal to his Bodily Injury and $500 deductibles on his Collision and Comprehensive coverage. About how much would his insurance change if he traded in his 2008 Toyota Camry for a 512 horsepower, 2008 Chevy Corvette Z06? Just for fun, we also considered a vintage Corvette for Jeff. The results may surprise you.*

 

Insurance Premium
Vehicle
Per Month
Per Year
2008 Toyota Camry LE V6
$171
$2,052
2008 Corvette 454 V8
$182
$2,184
1981 Corvette 350 V8
$105
$1,260

 

As you can see, insuring a sports car as Jeff’s primary vehicle has increased his insurance policy’s premium, but in our test instance not by much–$132 for the year. Actual quotes may vary based on factors specific to you. Here’s a tip: Before you fall in love with that sports car, give us a call, and we’ll give you an insurance quote before you buy it. After all, your friends and family should be the only ones surprised with your new wheels, not you as you deal with a possible increase in your insurance premium! Our phone number is 1-800-258-5101.

*Quotes are generated from AnswerFinancial.com. Actual quotes may vary based on numerous factors.

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