A lot of men and women see TV commercials showing sleek and high-performance sports cars and begin seeing themselves blast down a curvy highway while taking in a beautiful countryside or mountain road.
Then, they remember that a sports car and three young children is probably an impossible option. Oh well. But some folks, especially single men and women or couples who have a family car refuse to go through life without driving their dream machine. This article is for you.
What are the Characteristics of a Sports Car?
Many people have different ideas about what a sports car should look like. In fact, Wikipedia even has a page that describes the common characteristics of a sports car according to the layout, engine, horsepower and drive train.
What’s most important, however, is what you think makes a sports car and even more importantly, what the insurance industry thinks makes up a sports car. Sports cars have been around since the early 1900s so certainly they have been transfigured over time.
We decided to search the internet for a list of the characteristics of a sports car and quite frankly, every article we reviewed had varied characteristics but there were quite a few with similarities.
Automotive Indepth, a highly respected automotive magazine, offered the following:
A sports car is a relatively small car where the main qualities are high performance and superior handling. Since these kinds of vehicles are typically very expensive, it is common for them to also include many luxurious features, although not as many as an executive or premium automobile since sport vehicles also need to be as light as possible.
In terms of seating, sports cars are predominantly two-seaters. This is done in order to make them smaller and lighter and increase performance. However, there are examples of sports cars which have a second row of seats, but with very little room. In these cases, the back seats are intended mostly for children or for luggage as an adult would not be able to ride comfortably in the back. As a result, this configuration is advertised as 2+2 instead of 4 passengers, meaning two full seats and two “occasional” seats.
A sports car is a sports car if the owner believes it’s a sports car and a sports car is a sports car if the auto insurance company believes it’s a sports car.
What is Sports Car Insurance?
In most cases, there is no difference between sports car insurance and traditional car insurance. Both policies offer the same package of coverages and both types of insurance have rates based on various underwriting factors which typically include the following:
|Who, What, & Where||Underwriting Questions||Why?|
|The Drivers||Age of all drivers to be insured||Age of drivers typically indicates driving experience and inexperienced drivers are a higher risk.|
|Gender of drivers to be insured.||Typically female drivers are rated lower than makes based on claims hiistory.|
|Marital Status||Married drivers are rated lower than single drivers.|
|Driving Record||Insurers will always pull the motor vehicle report for the last 3 to 5 years|
|Claims History||Insurers have access to claims reports (CLUE) whether the claim was reported or not.|
|Insurance Score||An insurance score is very similar to a credit score and is typically pulled on the policy owner.|
|The Vehicle(s)||Year, make, model, sub-model, and VIN #||This provides the company what it needs to know about your vehicle(s). The VIN# typically indicates safety features installed on your vehicle including other data like color, model year, and country of origin.|
|Garaging Address||City, State, and garage information||Insurance rates are typically based on "zones" which is the geographical location of your vehicle. The company will also want to know if your vehicle is parked in an open lot, on the street, or in a locked garage.|
The primary difference between sports car insurance and traditional insurance is whether the insurance carrier will accept the vehicle. Many carriers will accept many sports cars as long as vehicle type falls within their underwriting guidelines. If your car doesn’t qualify, your agent will simply rate your vehicle with a company that has more liberal underwriting guidelines.
There are auto insurance companies that specialize in exotic, high-performance, and luxury sports cars, but in today’s insurance marketplace, most of the highly-rated well-known insurance companies will offer sports car insurance as well.
Why does Sports Car Insurance Cost More?
Car insurance rates are all about risk exposure. Even if you’re a good driver with plenty of experience and have a clean driving record, it’s going to cost you more money to insure your Corvette than it would to insure your Malibu.
Since sports cars typically travel much faster than regular cars, drivers will typically take advantage of that additional power which increases the risk that an accident could happen. Think about it, if you normally drive the speed limit in your mini-van on the way to your daughter’s soccer game, you’ll probably drive very carefully because you have precious cargo in the car with you.
But, if you take your Corvette out on the turnpike to visit some friends from college and you’re the only one in the vehicle. don’t you think you’d drive a little differently? Insurance companies know that.
Another issue is the cost to repair or replace an expensive sports car can be much higher than a 4-door sedan or SUV.
For example, a 2019 Corvette starts at about $56,000 versus a Chevy Equinox which starts at about $24,000, so if both of these vehicles were totaled or stolen, the insurance company will be on the hook a lot more for the Corvette than they would be for the Equinox. Once again, this is referred to as risk exposure which is what the insurance companies consider when they publish their rates.
How Can I Get the Best Insurance Rates for My Sports Car”
Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to make sure your insurance rates are the lowest rates possible.
- Keep your driving record as clean as possible
- Work to make sure your credit score stays as high as possible
- Use a less risky car for driving to work and taking Mom and the kids to the beach
- Make sure your sports car comes with all the latest safety features
- Bundle your insurance policies at the same company
- Pay your premium in full if at all possible
- Consider a higher deductible for your collision coverage
- Always shop your insurance with an independent agent to compare multiple quotes
One Last Thing…
When you are shopping for your car insurance with an independent agent ask about the companies he or she are recommending. What’s their A.M. Best rating? How’s their BBB rating? What’re their claims satisfaction rating? In other words, don’t just settle on an insurance payment, buy a promise from a company that has a history of keeping their promises. You see, all insurance policies are a promise to pay in exchange for a premium so make darn sure the company you choose has a history of keeping their promise.