It is interesting to know that there are 20 groups for car insurance. Each type of car is allocated to a group and those in group 1 attract the lowest premium and those in group 20 attract the highest. Cars in the lowest group include a Fiat Panda and Vauxhall Corsa and the highest group would be things like a Porshe 911.
There are a selection of reasons why cars are placed into certain categories. These are things like the cost of the parts, the repair time, the performance of the car, how good the car security is and the new car values. A foreign car is likely to be more expensive to repair because the parts will be more expensive and harder to get as will a vintage car and so these are likely to be in a higher category than a British car which has parts that are easy to get hold of. It makes sense that cars that are more expensive and time consuming to fix will attract higher premiums and those which are cheaper to fix will be cheaper to insure.
If you are buying a new car and want to keep the cost of insurance down then it could be a good idea to look on the Association of British Insurers website to see which groups certain cars belong in and this might help you when deciding which car to buy. It can make quite a significant difference to the cost of the insurance. Remember that you will have to pay insurance every year you have the car and so a small saving each year could really add up over the life of the car. Obviously, many people want a more powerful or bigger car but it could be worth looking in to the car insurance groups if you are choosing between models.
For young drivers, car insurance can often be a huge stumbling block when it comes to getting on the road. It can sometimes exceed the cost of the car itself, making driving a luxury that many teenagers cannot afford.
Car insurance groupings
One way of getting around the problem is to consider the insurance group of the car before you purchase it. There are a number of tools online that allow you to check the car insurance groups of various car models, and the lower the group, the cheaper your insurance will be. A car’s insurance group is determined by independent testing company Thatcham, who consider impact performance, repairability, repair costs and theft prevention measures. A group number between 1 and 50 is then assigned, and used by most insurers to factor into pricing up the policy.
The insurance group system has not always contained 50 groups – there used to be 20, and prior to that, just 9. However, the increasing amount of choice on offer in the UK automobile market has forced insurers to take a more granular approach to categorising vehicles.
An example of a car in a low insurance group would be a Ford Fiesta. Most cars by manufacturers such as BMW, Mercedes and Ferrari will be in such high insurance groups that they will be totally off limits to the average young driver.
Other than making sensible decisions regarding their choice of car, young drivers might consider insuring themselves with one of a new breed of car insurance companies who are using telematics – in-car motion sensors and GPS – to assess the quality of a driver. This helps young drivers prove their ability without having to wait years to accumulate a no claims discount. Certain systems also impose mileage restrictions and curfews on young drivers to reduce the risk they pose. After all, the reason that young people pay so much for car insurance is down to the fact that they’re much more likely to be involved in a collision. Anything that can reduce that risk will allow insurers to lower premiums.
Advanced driving lessons
Another option is to consider an advanced driving programme, such as those offered by Pass Plus or a2om/Drive iQ. These systems teach young drivers more than the basics necessary to get in the road, and some insurance companies will give discounts if you’ve completed either of them.
Other things will make it difficult for young people to get insured – for example, many insurers won’t consider cars that have been imported from other countries, or cars that have been modified.