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Insurance for kit cars
With kit cars, the owner buys the different elements of a car – frame, parts, gearbox, engine – and assembles it himself (and it usually is a him!). While the cars are not necessarily as unsafe as they usually look, they inevitably lack modern safety features such as high-impact crumple zones, airbags, and all the rest.
A defining feature of most kit-cars is their weight – or rather lack of it. Cars generally are getting heavier as they load up with safety features and electronics as well as bulking up to accommodate bigger people. Kit-cars suffer none of this, and are generally light in weight deliberately to enhance the driving experience and give greater acceleration.
These positive characteristics can be still enhanced by equipping them with larger engines, and many kit-cars feature amazing power-to-weight ratios as engines designed for much larger cars are shoe-horned into small frames. This also makes them attractive to thieves and joy-riders; also, they tend to lack the complex security systems and immobilisers of modern cars and makes them an easy option.
All of which constitutes a big red flag for the insurance industry: a small, lightweight, easy-to-steal car with a large engine, driven by ‘enthusiasts’.
You can keep your premiums down somewhat by not going overboard on the engine front, having just one named driver, fitting immobilisers etc. if you can, and having a clean driving record.
Because of its specialist nature, you must be as honest about what your car is and what you have done to it. Otherwise disaster could strike and when it comes to claiming; the insurer will not pay out.
Specialist insurers are generally your best bet for cover on these types of cars – the mainstream companies will often decline to offer cover at all.