How do you insure hot rod cars?

If you've recently repaired one or more hot rod cars, you're likely in the market to get them insured. Luckily, rates for hot rod car insurance, whether classic or agreed value, are usually cheaper than traditional car insurance on otherwise identical vehicles. Comprehensive quotes for hot rod car insurance can range from $400 to $800 a year.

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UPDATED: Dec 11, 2021

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Written By: Laura BerryReviewed By: Joel OhmanUPDATED: Dec 11, 2021Fact Checked

Here's what you need to know...

  • There are different insurance policies for hot rod cars
  • Classic, agreed value, and custom parts car insurance are all options
  • Discussing your vehicle and policy options with an agent will help you narrow it down

Hot rod cars are fun to rebuild and even more fun to show off. However, how you insure them will likely come down to your vehicle and preferences. Understanding your car insurance policy and what it allows will help you get the best classic car insurance for your hot rod.

Curious about rates for hot rod car insurance? Enter your ZIP code into our free quote tool to see what you could pay.

What companies offer hot rod car insurance?

A classic car is a piece of American history that we can still see and drive around today. Ensuring these vehicles with the right policy can even be affordable if the car meets the policy’s requirements.

Some of the most popular insurance companies that offer classic car insurance for hot rods are:

  • Hagerty
  • Nationwide
  • Safeco

When it comes to getting custom or classic car insurance, you’ll want to make sure that the insurer offers the right deals for your policy.

Some insurance companies, like Hagerty, offer coverage for remodeling, while others, like Safeco, have mile restrictions for some policies. Because the cost of insurance is based on risk and value, you should ensure that your policy fits your situation.

How much does classic car insurance cost?

According to Progressive, classic car insurance rates can often be at least 34% less than traditional insurance. Those savings come from the lowered risk of not driving the car regularly.

That doesn’t mean you can’t drive the car; you’ll just have to be selective about when you start the engine.

According to our classic auto insurance guide, which looks at classic car rates state by state, most insurance policies range from $400 to $800 a year for full coverage. That’s much cheaper than traditional car insurance policies for newer vehicles.

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What counts as a hot rod to car insurance companies?

According to the National Street Rod Association, a hot rod is a vehicle that:

  • Was created in 1948 or earlier
  • Has undergone modernization in some form
  • Does not have standard factory equipment

Since there are no policies specifically designed for hot rods, you’ll likely have to consider other options. For instance, if you’ve taken pride in restoring your car to its factory build, you can probably still get classic car insurance.

However, if you’ve been doing some of your mechanical work and replaced parts in the vehicle, you’ll need to get some special coverage.

How do I know if my car can get hot rod insurance?

If you’re looking to get classic car insurance, there are a few requirements that your vehicle will need to meet. According to the Insurance Information Institute, there are many factors that the insurer will look at besides the car’s age.

To get classic car insurance, you will need to ensure:

  • Your vehicle meets the minimum age requirement
  • You aren’t driving the car regularly
  • That your vehicle is in secure storage
  • You don’t have a bad driving record

You may also wish to ask your insurer if you have coverage for car shows.

If you can pass all of the above benchmarks, you shouldn’t have any problem getting a suitable classic car insurance policy.

How do I know if I need rat rod insurance?

If your car has been modified a good deal from its original look, you may need to look for another insurance policy. Unfortunately, classic car insurance won’t cover rat rods because they are highly customized.

Some hot rod cars may not even qualify for classic car insurance if they’ve been heavily modernized. If that’s the case, you will benefit much more from an agreed value car insurance policy.

What are policy features important on hot rod insurance?

When you get a classic car insurance policy, you should ensure that it meets all of your needs. This can be everything from including showroom coverage to allowing you to drive the car on short trips.

When you apply for a classic car insurance policy, you should verify that you’ll be covered for the situations your vehicle will be in. Nothing would be worse than having your car dinged up on the showroom floor and finding out you don’t have the right coverage to pay for repairs.

What is agreed value car insurance?

Just like it sounds, agreed value car insurance is a policy where you and the insurer agree on the vehicle’s value. This type of policy is suitable for vehicles that:

  • Are missing components
  • Have custom equipment
  • Are made to look worse than they are

With agreed value car insurance, you can go over the vehicle with an agent and discuss what you think the appropriate value is. Then, your insurer will estimate your car insurance rates from there.

Are there additional coverage options on hot rods?

Another option to consider for hot rods with custom parts is a custom parts and equipment policy. This primarily covers vehicles with custom equipment, but may not offer enough value for a full classic car.

Most insurance companies insure vehicles for what they came out of the factory with, so adding supplemental coverage to your classic car may be a good idea.

How can I get affordable modified car insurance?

If you need to get more affordable car insurance rates, there are a few things you can do, including:

  • Improving your driving record – This will show the insurer that you’re a responsible driver and less of a risk.
  • Raising your deductible – You’ll be paying more for repairs before the insurance kicks in, but your rates will be lower.
  • Consider your options – Looking at multiple policy options will ensure that you find the best price.

Drivers with few or no accidents and infractions on their records will always get the best rates. Shopping around with multiple insurance companies can also help you save money.

Can I get hot rod insurance while modifying a car?

Some insurance companies, like Hagerty, allow you to ensure your classic car in all steps of the remodeling process. As an example, Hagerty’s vehicle under construction coverage includes:

  • Guaranteed value
  • $250 in coverage for tools
  • A network of towing specialists to get your vehicle to the shop

Hagerty will guarantee to insure your classic car for up to $25,000 and give you coverage for any lost or damaged tools. With an insurance policy like that, you’d have a helping hand getting your vehicle in proper shape.

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Hot Rod Car Insurance: The Bottom Line

If you need hot rod car insurance, there are more than a few companies that will be happy to provide that to you. First, however, you’ll need to decide what kind of coverage your car needs. Some insurance companies even offer added benefits when you’re rebuilding a classic car.

Are you looking for quotes for hot rod car insurance? Enter your ZIP code into our free quote tool to see what you could pay.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

A former insurance producer, Laura understands that education is key when it comes to buying insurance. She has happily dedicated many hours to helping her clients understand how the insurance marketplace works so they can find the best car, home, and life insurance products for their needs.

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Written by Laura Berry
Former Insurance Agent Laura Berry

Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP® Joel Ohman

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