4x4 Insurance 

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The 4x4 insurance is designed to help both the off-road enthusiast and the urban dweller with the right level of cover to protect their investment. By stating just how you plan to use your vehicle will help designate the risk factor the vehicle posses to the insurance company so that an accurate quote can be provided.

Why is my 4x4 so expensive to insure?

Insurance companies rate a vehicle premium on risk factors. The typical 4x4 has several standard features that place it as a high risk to cover. The number one factor is the cost to replace or repair, in additional the following also play into making 4x4 more expensive than standard car insurance.

4x4 insurance
  • 4-wheel drive.
  • Large engine displacement.
  • Capable of going over rough terrain.
  • Insurance category that the 4x4 belongs to

Each of these items is classified as high risk as separate items. With all of them present on one vehicle, the risk factor is raised even higher.

4x4 insurance categories

The Association of British Insurers have devised a system to group vehicles into insurance categories based on the risk posed to the broker or underwriter. The categories range from 1 to 50 with vehicles in group one being the cheapest to insure. It probably goes without surprise that that vehicles like the Land Rover Discovery will be found in higher insurance groups.

If  you wish to drive a 4x4, but not pay excessive insurance prices, considers 4x4's that lie at the lower end of the scale. The Dacia Duster is a good example of a 4x4 that comes with more reasonable insurance costs.

Can I take my 4x4 off-road and still be covered with insurance?

The typical policy of 4x4 insurance does not include going off-road. That is classified as extremely high risk by the insurance industry. Since most standard 4x4 insurance policies do not cover off-road activities, the off-road enthusiast must declare their intentions to participate in this high risk adventure. This will increase the cost of the insurance premium. If a problem occurs off-road and this declaration is not made, then claims will not be honoured.

Some insurance companies do have an add-on to the standard policy where going off-road is covered. This is typically for recreational activities and not a competition event.

Do I have to insure my recreational 4x4 vehicle?

All vehicles that will operate on UK roads need to be covered by vehicle insurance. For owners of a recreational off-road only vehicle, no insurance is required if the vehicle has been declared as such with a SORN or Statutory Off Road Notification with the DVLA. With a SORN declaration, the vehicle must be transported to the off-road area via a trailer or towed by a third party vehicle. It can’t be legally driven on the road for any reason.

What are the standard 4x4 insurance policies?

Like all other personal vehicles in the UK, there are three levels of insurance that can be taken out to insure a 4x4 vehicle.

Full comprehensive

Comprehensive Cover : This is the most inclusive cover available for any kind of vehicle, including 4x4's. It provides cover against theft, damage and  fire. The extra important parts is that it will also cover you even if your actions were to cause a road  accident

Third party fire and theft

This includes third party damages plus cover if your vehicle is stolen or damaged in fire.

Third Party

Third party 4x4 cover is the legal minimum required to drive in the UK. This cover will only provide cover to damage to the vehicle of another or third party, if the driver of the 4 by 4 is deemed at fault. Be aware, if you are at fault, no cover is provided to repair your vehicle or pay for any associated medical costs.  

Comparison Quotes for modified 4x4 are available

Yes, a modified 4x4 vehicle can be insured, but the modifications must be declared to the insurance company before the policy is taken out. Before you make any modifications, be aware that modified 4x4 insurance will be slightly more expensive. Common modifications that are typically declared and covered include;

  • Engine performance add-ons
  • Roll cages
  • Suspension improvement and upgrades
  • Non- standard tires

What if I live on a dirt road, is that considered off-road?

Most insurance firms classify a road as being paved. For those that have to travel on an unpaved path or road, there is a special amendment that can be added to a 4x4 insurance policy called Greenlane Insurance.

What are the typical add-ons that can be attached to a 4x4 insurance policy?

Many of the same add-ons for a standard vehicle are available for a 4x4 vehicle. Breakdown assistance is available for help when the vehicle can’t proceed down the road on its own. Note, the breakdown has to occur on a paved road. There are a few services that will help recover your 4x4 from a bog or other problem off-road, but that is not part of the standard cover.

Legal expenses can be added to the policy. This will cover claims against you where a third party states they have been injured or that you have damaged their property with your vehicle.

How can I reduce the costs of 4x4 insurance?

  • Parking Security:  Improving the vehicle security will reduce the risk and thus the premium. This can be achieved by providing off-road park overnight, or better still stowed in a secure garage when not on the road.
  • Vehicle Theft deterrents : Adding a GPS tracking device will reduce theft and increase the like hood of recovery. In addition, add an immobilizer
  • Annual Payment : Paying the premium on an annual basis will help avoid the interest rates that are applied to those that pay monthly.
  • Low miles : Keeping the annual mileage low for the 4x4 which is being used as a secondary vehicle, this will lower the risk and premium costs since it will not be constantly on the road. This has to be declared when the policy is taken out. 

The 4x4 insurance policy is not a typical type of cover, and the 4x4 vehicle is not a typical type of transportation. The financial protection this type of vehicle needs is specific to the nature of its unique features that are used by their owners to their own fulfilment. With the right level of protection, these features can be enjoyed for years to come, no matter what events occur in the lifespan of the 4x4.

*51% of consumers could save £504.25 on their Car Insurance. The saving was calculated by comparing the cheapest price found with the average of the next five cheapest prices quoted by insurance providers on Seopa Ltd’s insurance comparison website. This is based on representative cost savings from September 2023 data. The savings you could achieve are dependent on your individual circumstances and how you selected your current insurance supplier..

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