Custom cars come in all shapes and sizes, of varying value, of different uses, driven mostly on the public roads, or destined mainly for the show-ground. Though it's generally used as a generic term for more or less any form of modified vehicle, a custom car may also include a "street rod" (or simply "rod"), an American customization, or even a "dragster". As befits such a wide range and variety of different vehicles, car insurance itself also needs to come in various different packages.
- Extraordinary values – it is hardly surprising, given the huge range of vehicles that are often called "custom cars", that each example has a peculiar value of its own. The basis for that valuation might start off being based on the underlying value of the original, unmodified vehicle, but the value is significantly altered by the extent and cost of the customisation it has eventually undergone. What typically sets custom car insurance apart from the cover arranged for more run of the mill vehicles, therefore, is the need to agree upon a valuation with the insurer.
High street insurance providers may often rely on the manufacturers' published prices or trade guides to second-hand values when determining the insurance value for common makes and models of motor car.
Therefore, some of these providers may decline a request for custom car insurance. Fortunately, however, there are a number of specialist insurance providers – many of whom advertise on the internet – who are eager to agree valuations of custom cars and to offer the full range of insurance needs;
- Elements of cover – once the valuation has been agreed, however, such specialist providers of insurance for a custom vehicle typically offer cover that is very similar in principle to that provided by any other motor insurer. In other words, discounts might be available if the intended annual mileage is restricted to a predetermined total or if all drivers are going to be over the age of 25 years. Secure garaging of the vehicle when it is not in use may also be expected to significantly reduce the cost of premiums. No claims discounts are also likely to result in an appreciable lowering of premiums over successive years.
- Work in progress – as a custom car, your vehicle is likely to spend more than its usual lifespan in the garage or workshop being worked on whilst modifications are being made. Naturally, this might prove to be a vulnerable time for your pride and joy whilst it is especially vulnerable to accidental damage, theft or fire. Thankfully, therefore, most custom car insurance policies make particular provision to ensure that your vehicle remains fully protected during such works in progress. Modifications and further customization may then proceed, with you comfortable in the knowledge that your investment in the car is protected.