Whatever drew your attention, it is probably considered a classic or vintage automobile.
Growing up in the sixties and seventies, it is hard to imagine cars now considered classic were our standard mode of transportation.
Some of my fondest memories include piling into my friend’s 1965 Buick Wildcat convertible and heading for Galveston, while nights were spent riding around Houston in my boyfriend’s 1968 Chevy Camaro, blasting ZZ Top and every stop light offered a possible race behind the Armour Plant off Aldine Westfield.
Unless you are lucky enough to have kept one of these cars, most have been painstakingly restored in some way or the other. While thousands of dollars can be invested in this process, collector cars actually appreciate in value and to protect that you will want to obtain coverage for this type of vehicle called “collector automobile coverage” and is normally provided in a separate policy from the cars you drive on a daily basis.
When considering vehicles that fall into a collector category, there are normally three periods that label what type it fits in.
While most car enthusiasts relate to a “Veteran” or “Antique” car as being manufactured prior to 1903; “Vintage” cars usually fall between 1903 and 1933.
“Classic” cars, on the other hand, offer a different opinion when it comes to the production year; although most agree if the car is at least 35 years old it is probably a classic.
Regardless of the year manufactured, obtaining a special auto policy have specifications that must be met in order to be insured under an Antique/Classic policy.
Most insurance companies require the vehicle be in good or restored condition, be kept in a fully enclosed and locked facility, be at least 19 years old and be primarily used in exhibitions, club activities, etc. Although occasional driving is acceptable, the car may not be used as primary transportation.
While collector auto insurance is relatively inexpensive, the coverage offered is very specific to the car.
As each state and company determine what is offered, some options available under this policy are collision (damage arising from collision with another object), “garaging location” (coverage while the vehicle is stored), spare parts (replacement costs for specific parts), comprehensive (loss to the vehicle) and value coverage (amount of the vehicle’s value).
One thing to understand about this type of policy, is most companies limit the amount of miles that can be added between 1000 and 5000 per year.
Considering the time and expense that usually accompany a collector car, the policy itself is just as important as any other aspect involved. Since insurance coverage for these cars require a special policy, it is always a good idea to obtain insurance from a company that has familiarity with the vehicles themselves.
If paperwork for the policy is not completed properly, any claims file could end up being a nightmare, or worst, denied.
Next time you decide to take your classic car for a drive on a beautiful day, be sure you crank up the classics (or oldies as they are now called) on the radio, smile as you catch the looks and enjoy the ride because, rest assured, with collector automobile insurance your investment is protected.