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Auto Insurance for Kit Vehicles [Update]

Things to remember...

  • Kit vehicles are sometimes referred to as component cars since they are sold as a bundle of parts instead of being pre-assembled
  • The kit sets are put together by different manufacturers for car enthusiasts to build their own, unique vehicles
  • These vehicles are often customized or assembled with unique parts, which means these cars can face higher amounts of theft or vandalism
  • When first purchased, these vehicle kits may be lacking anti-theft or security features, so you may want to invest in these features to keep your kit vehicle protected
  • If you are searching for insurance coverage for a kit vehicle, make sure you talk to different insurance carriers to get a better idea of the prices charged for your unique situation

Before investing your time and money in a kit vehicle, sometimes called a component car, you need to consider insurance coverage.

A kit vehicle often faces higher risks than a pre-assembled vehicle, especially when unique or expensive parts are installed. Is kit car insurance cheap? That depends on the value of your car. Let’s get right into it.

Before choosing the car insurance provider for you, research the best companies and compare policy quotes to get a better idea of what coverage you can get for your car.

Enter your ZIP code above to compare rates for your kit car today and find out what you can do to save money on kit car insurance.

Table of Contents

Kit Cars and Auto Insurance Rates and Coverage

Do you need insurance for a kit car, and what should you look for when buying kit car insurance? If you’re planning to drive it at all, or even if you want to cover it from damages that could happen in your garage, the answer is yes.

Reducing your risk exposure is part of your responsibility as a vehicle owner, and this is no different when you have put together a kit vehicle.

Is kit car auto insurance expensive? It will likely be higher than insurance on a normal vehicle. Insurance companies often work with policyholders that try to mitigate their risks. Ways that you can pay less in premiums include:

  • Choosing a higher deductible
  • Finding applicable discounts
  • Reducing your coverage

Carrying a high deductible on your policy can also help reduce your costs since the deductible is the amount of any covered loss you will be responsible for covering.

There are certainly pros and cons of kit car insurance. Kit vehicle policies may have some different terms and conditions, but they often still protect your vehicle in the event of physical damages.

When choosing your policy, make sure to get coverage that will help protect you from losses you cannot handle on your own.

One way that policyholders attempt to reduce their costs is by reducing their coverage; this can be an even riskier choice than paying for more coverage.

If you’re considering an insurance carrier, speak to them about your risks, and they can help you assess if the limits you’ve chosen are adequate to protect you from unreasonable loss.

It’s important to have adequate coverage. Liability is required if you’re driving your car, but liability doesn’t cover damage to your vehicle. According to the Insurance Information Institute, one in eight drivers in the United States is uninsured. That means you’ll probably have to cover damages they cause if they hit you.

How do you insure a replica car, kit car, or classic? Similarly to classic car insurance, kit cars are insured based on how much everybody agrees they’re worth. Here are some typical auto insurance rates for classics which should give you a good baseline for kit vehicle auto insurance rates:

Classic Auto Insurance Rates by State
South Dakota$180.13$154.87$125.15$460.15
North Dakota$178.91$138.62$146.45$463.98
North Carolina$215.65$81.65$176.15$473.45
New Hampshire$240.34$66.46$184.45$491.25
New Mexico$292.82$103.54$166.19$562.55
South Carolina$316.25$108.56$159.04$583.86
West Virginia$295.10$122.57$197.80$615.47
Rhode Island$455.88$79.31$246.91$782.10
District of Columbia$377.29$139.94$281.20$798.44
New York$482.71$102.67$231.01$816.40
New Jersey$521.74$78.81$229.12$829.67
Compare RatesStart Now →

How much does it cost to insure a kit car on average? You’ll have to insure your kit car a little differently than normal vehicles because, instead of going on the value according to Kelley Blue Book, you’re going to settle on an agreed-upon value with your insurer.

See the video below which discusses agreed-upon value. 

So, can you insure a kit car? Yes, of course. But, more than with most cars, this is one type of insurance you may want to dig into and determine your specific needs and if there are additional policy riders kit cars should consider.

What companies provide kit car insurance? Kit car auto insurance is such a specialty coverage, but some insurance companies such as Progressive or Geico offer kit car insurance. Should you shop around to compare rates on kit car insurance? You may be able to find cheaper auto insurance with a specialized company.

Risks Faced By Kit Cars

Kit vehicles face many of the same risks that a fabricated or assembled car will face, such as being involved in an accident or being damaged by hail.

Kit cars are often very lightweight with strong engines. It’s a lot of fun, but it doesn’t mean it’s the safest ride.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) measures the safety of different vehicles, and they’ve found a correlation between safety and the weight of vehicles. Heavier and larger vehicles are safer, as larger vehicles just have more metal between you and the collision energy.

Kit cars are generally light and smallish, so that can mean higher rates. There’s no one way to measure the safety of kit cars, as they’re custom-built, and custom-built auto insurance pricing will reflect that.

Some other risks will be higher for these cars, including the risks of theft and vandalism, due to the expensive nature of some of the vehicle’s components.

Kit vehicles may have more powerful engines, lightweight bodies, or unique parts as part of the assembly which can make a kit vehicle a prime target for car thieves trying to sell or salvage parts, meaning security is something to take into consideration.

Finding ways to secure your vehicle when not in use can help keep it protected from theft and vandalism can reduce your risk and reduce your premium costs.

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What Kit Cars Are

What is a kit car? A kit vehicle is a car that’s been assembled from a set of parts, which is usually put together by a vehicle enthusiast. These vehicles can be customized in any way the hobbyist desires.

This video interviews Eric McClellan, a journalist who talks about custom-built fast supercars.

These kits can come with a complete vehicle ready to be assembled, or it can be parts and pieces that the individual can use with other salvaged parts.

Kit vehicles can be purchased from different manufacturers, whether they are national or international vehicle manufacturers.

Some kit vehicles can be purchased partially complete, usually having the mechanical systems completed by an experienced mechanic to help reduce the technical knowledge needed by the purchaser.

Kit cars, however, are not considered hand-built cars since the kit has been assembled by a manufacturer and then sold by a third party to the consumer.

A lot of kit cars are imported, with pieces from vehicles in other countries. The International Trade Administration reports that about 50,000 used vehicles are imported each year.

Some imports are kit cars or get turned into kit cars. Importing vehicles isn’t super easy and can be done with brokers who handle most of the headache. Imported vehicles must meet emission requirements set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and most of these are going to be over 25 years old because laws are less restrictive for older cars.

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Conclusion to Kit Cars and Auto Insurance

The risks faced by kit vehicles are similar to pre-assembled cars, but some risks are increased due to the unique composition of these vehicles; expensive engines or modifications can attract unwanted attention.

If a kit vehicle experiences a loss, you may find yourself with a claim that you are unable to handle alone. It’s important to choose the best car insurance coverage to protect your investment as well as yourself.

You can get insurance quotes from multiple providers while you’re choosing your policy, and you can even look around after you already have a policy.

It’s important to understand what your car insurance covers, such as the following:

  • policy limits
  • policy conditions
  • policy exclusions

These details are listed in the policy declarations, and your provider can speak with you about these details.

The increased amount of theft and vandalism losses means that securing your vehicle and installing anti-theft devices is critical.

If you have access to a secured storage location, you may benefit from storing your kit vehicle there; insurance providers may also be willing to lower your policy costs if you are implementing additional security measures to reduce potential losses.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you still have questions about your kit car?

Where can you get temporary car insurance?

if you only bring your kit car out for car shows or other special occasions, you may be interested in two day auto insurance or weekly auto insurance. If you just want insurance to cover the drive home from where you bought it, temporary auto insurance seems like an option. But it’s usually not available in this country.

But you may find that it’s a good idea for you to get usage-based insurance. With this, you only pay for how much you drive, so you won’t pay high rates for a rarely-driven car.

It’s not likely that you can cover your car temporarily if you ever plan to drive it again. But, you might be able to drop coverage to comprehensive-only — or parked car insurance — which is just leaving it sitting in your driveway car insurance. But even a ride around the block to test out your new gadget won’t be covered.

Are kit cars worth it?

It’s really subjective on whether building your own kit car is worth it. If you want a really powerful car, you might be better off buying a sportscar. If you want to enjoy the build, then look into kit cars. You probably won’t get as much money out of it as your put in, so that’s another thing to consider.

Really, it comes down to why you want it, and if the answer is just because you enjoy them, go for it. If you’re still unsure about the commitment, you can talk to kit car specialists who know more about what goes into the process.

Is a component car the same thing as a kit car?

These terms are often used interchangeably.

Will your regular auto insurance cover your kit car?

Kit car auto insurance rates are determined differently than regular auto insurance. To determine how much coverage is needed, you and the insurer must come to an “agreed upon” value for the kit car. This is different from regular insurance which typically looks at a Kelley Blue Book value.

Additionally, kit car auto insurance is a specialty coverage, but it shouldn’t be too hard to find an insurer willing to cover your custom vehicle. Should you explore insurance costs before getting/building a kit car? You may want to talk to a representative or kit car specialist ahead of time. 

Is collector auto insurance or hobby auto insurance the same as kit auto insurance?

Collector’s insurance often has requirements for how old the vehicle needs to be. If it’s too young, it may not qualify. Hobby car auto insurance is for a vehicle that you only use as a hobby, so not often. You’ll probably have to prove you have another vehicle for day-to-day use in order to qualify.

Both might be options for your kit car, but each car is different.

What are some common claims filed by kit car owners?

Kit cars have similar claims as other vehicles, but there may also be an increase in comprehensive coverage claims. If you’re taking your vehicle to car shows, there’s a greater risk of accidents happening with a crowd of people getting close and admiring your vehicle. Comprehensive covers things like scratches or damage to your windshield and glass.

So, what kind of coverage should you consider and can you buy less than full coverage? You can, but be aware that if you plan to drive the vehicle at all, you will need at least liability coverage, as required by your state’s law. AAA lists these by state if you’re curious. 

Insurers are also trained in red flags to look for in kit car policy claims. One of those is too many claims, so try to keep an eye on your vehicle when it’s sitting in that line of cars with hundreds of people taking a look.

Are kit cars more likely to be stolen or vandalized?

The most frequently stolen vehicles are actually mass-produced vehicles, as they are easiest to strip for parts and make them disappear.

Kit cars are not as easy to make disappear, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be vigilant. There’s always the possibility that somebody wants it since it’s a cool ride.

Can you easily get quotes on kit car auto insurance, and should you shop online or with a local agent? What info will you need when shopping for kit car auto insurance? You can easily find that out plus compare auto insurance coverage rates for your kit car today using our free tool below. Enter your zip code below to begin.


  1. https://www.iii.org/fact-statistic/facts-statistics-uninsured-motorists
  2. https://legacy.trade.gov/td/otm/autostats.asp
  3. https://www.epa.gov/importing-vehicles-and-engines/kit-car-policy
  4. https://www.iihs.org/topics/vehicle-size-and-weight#how-size-and-weight-affect-safety
  5. https://drivinglaws.aaa.com/tag/liability-laws/

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