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So what is a performance car? One leading motoring magazine defines performance cars as ‘Cars that accelerate quickly up to a high top speed – or at least looks as though it can.’
Some examples of performance cars include:
Mini Cooper ‘S’, Porsche, TVR, Volkswagen Golf GTI (and all the ‘hot hatches’), BMW Z’s and M series. Any of the stable of cars that rocket from 0 to 60 in around 9 seconds or under.
Cars considered by the insurance industry as being ‘performance vehicles’ generally attract much higher premiums than ordinary family saloons or hatchbacks. The reason for this is because statistics show that cars in the performance bracket are more likely to be involved in an accident than other cars of lesser power. This coupled with the facts that performance cars will probably have mechanical parts and body panels that are more expensive to repair or replace than standard models and that they are more likely to be targeted by car thieves. Furthermore, insurers know from their own experience that the drivers of performance cars are more likely to have driving convictions, especially for speeding, which makes them a higher insurance risk.
In common with all other motor vehicles used on the public highway, performance cars require a valid certificate of motor insurance providing a bare minimum of third part cover. This form of insurance will only provide compensation for any personal injury or damage caused to another person’s property. So in the event of you colliding with another driver and cause damage to their car, or cause injury to any person, your insurance policy will cover their repair bill and claim for personal injury and medical costs, but does not cover the cost of repair to your own car. If you are the owner of a so called performance car, the likelihood is that you will have spent a substantial sum of money on either purchasing it in the first place, or you will have invested heavily in modifying an ordinary car and turning it into something approaching your dream vehicle. Third party insurance is not for you! Although a policy offering fully comprehensive cover is expensive, it will provide the peace of mind of knowing that – within the bounds of certain exclusions present in all insurance policies, whatever happens to your cherished vehicle, your policy will protect your investment. Obtaining insurance for a performance or modified car can be difficult and almost impossible for a young or inexperienced driver, but a little research on the web will identify the many insurance companies specialising in policies for performance cars.
Finally, whatever type of insurance cover you choose; if you have built your own performance car by modifying a normally sedate family saloon, do not be tempted to try to keep the policy costs down by neglecting to tell your insurer of the changes you have made. Even simple things like fitting alloy wheels can make a difference, and if you do not disclose this, your company may be within their rights to refuse to honour a claim.
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