A Guide To 4×4 Car Insurance

4x4 Car InsuranceOver the past two decades, four wheel drives have become a noticeable automotive trend. Even conservative manufacturers like BMW and Mercedes, usually focused on prestigious, efficient, powerful cars have tried to stake a claim in this market.

Yet despite their amazing off-road capabilities, only a few drivers of 4×4 vehicles are interested in pursuing a rugged lifestyle, with most using these vehicles to simply drive around town.

Although many UK car insurance companies recognize this conservative usage and insure these vehicles with standard car insurance subject to a few conditions, other insurers remain wary, classify 4×4 vehicles to a higher insurance group, and ask for bigger premiums.

However, even those individuals who do use their vehicles for off-road driving can find reasonable rates and good cover if they change how they shop for insurance. Instead of seeking mainstream insurance companies, they should consider manufacturer’s insurance and specialist brokers who can offer a tailored policy.

Why Consumers like Four Wheel Drives

Four wheel drives are becoming increasingly popular among consumers for a variety of reasons:

  • Parents like their spacious and sturdy structure.
  • Motor enthusiasts delight in their cutting-edge technologies.
  • Dealers often offer them at a lower purchase price in terms of size, space, safety, versatility and functionality relative to more standard vehicles.
  • Marketers have advertised them as a status symbol.
  • Safety-conscious people believe they offer more protection to the driver and passengers in the event of a collision.
  • Urban motorists consider them easier to navigate through traffic on roads because of the elevated driving position, allowing greater visibility.

What Affects Car Insurance Premiums

Car insurance is not based on arbitrary pricing but on numerous factors that influence the perceived risk. So whether or not a rate is high can be due to more than the fact that the vehicle being insured is a four wheel drive.

When calculating costs, an insurance agent will consider:

  • How old is the driver?
  • How much experience does the driver have?
  • Are there any penalty points on the driver’s records?
  • Will the car be kept in a garage or left on a busy street at night?
  • Will the car be used for local driving or for long distance trips?
  • Has the car been modified?
  • What does the driver do for a living?
  • How secure is the car from theft?
  • Does this model have a high accident rate?
  • How many people will be driving the car?
  • How much potential damage will the car cause if there is an accident?

A Change In Insurance Trends

Four wheel drive vehicles—like, for example, the Discovery, the Freelander, the Mitsubishi Shogun, the Range Rover, the Land Rover, the BMW X3, the BMW X5, the Mercedes ML, and the new Audi Q7—have not always been cheap to insure because of the perceived risks and damage associated with off-road driving.

Since these vehicles have frequently been given bad press, many insurance companies have responded by charging exorbitant rates to cover a 4×4 vehicle, assuming that these big, hefty vehicles could cause serious damage if involved in an accident.

However, some insurance companies are looking at offering cheaper insurance for four wheel drive vehicles, including those that were previously considered problematic like modified or imported vehicle. Today it’s possible to get high-quality cover at excellent quotes and this cheaper insurance includes not only those who drive around town but also those who joyfully use their 4×4 vehicles for off-roading and green-laning.

While many policies are now much more affordable, you can save even more money by asking for a limited mileage policy if only driving a few thousand miles each year, mentioning how certain modifications have enhanced efficiency and performance, and pointing out how an alarm system or garage parking protects the vehicle.

Despite the growing diversity of these vehicles in the market and many owners choosing to modify their 4×4 with a vast collection of new technological add-ons, it is possible to find an appropriate four wheel insurance policy that fits your needs and does not ruin your budget.