Part of the makeup of an insurance premium is the risk that an insurance company perceives a driver may be, and it’s worth remembering that they aren’t just covering the car they’re insuring, but also any damage the driver may cause to other people, vehicle, or property. Therefore if you have had a previous driving conviction, the risk that you present is higher than someone in a very similar situation, but with a completely clean record.
Of course, the driver is not the only factor. Where the car is kept, the area it is kept in, the value, and what the car itself is can all play a part in what essentially becomes the insurance premium that you pay. Having a driving conviction almost always means paying more than you would have without the conviction, and there’s not much you can really do about that, but there are other factors that are within your control, such as the vehicle you own.
It is worth noting that insurers can also give a discount if you have owned a vehicle for several years, as they believe you have a good understanding of how it responds, giving you more chance of avoiding a potential accident. This may mean that if you already own a vehicle, changing to one that is “cheaper to insure” can have little to no benefit for you in terms of what you pay, so make sure you get quotes before you commit.
It is worth considering however that if you don’t currently have a car, buying one that is in a lower insurance bracket can help soften the blow of your increased insurance, to some extent.
Car insurance groups
Firstly, we will explain the car insurance group system. Each vehicle is ranked by insurers and put into groups. This could be from 1-20, 1-52, or whatever range the insurers choose to use. 1 is usually the cheapest group of cars to insure, with higher numbers being more expensive. Each group is determined based on two main factors, the probability of the vehicle causing damage, and the potential cost of repairs.
Insurance companies collect and analyze a vast amount of data, and a lot of their grouping is based on their own individual claim experiences. For example, while one company may rank a smaller-engined vehicle as a group 2 or 3, another may consider it more in the region of a group 11 or 12 if they have found that particular car was involved in a lot of accidents. For example, low grouped, small engined cars are often chosen by young drivers as a first car, and their lack of experience behind the wheel can show when looking at the statistics.
Insurance Group 1 Cars
As we mentioned above, not all insurers put cars in the same groups as each other. Different variations within the same model can also fall within different groups. A site such as Parkers can be used to give you a rough indication before you start approaching insurance companies for quotes. Cars listed in groups 1-5 give you the best chance of getting an affordable premium, but remember that this isn’t a hard-and-fast rule.
A few examples of a Group 1 car (on Parkers) include a Citroen C1 Airplay 1.0i, a Vauxhall Corsa Expression 1.0i 12V, a Volkswagen Polo Beats 1.0, or a Ford KA Studio 1.2 Ti-VCT.
Finding convicted driver insurance
Keeping to a car in a lower insurance group is the most affordable way to get back on the road after a driving conviction, especially in the first year or two, where the conviction is likely to have the most impact on your premium. After a year or two of clean driving, where you can build up some No Claims Discount again (if it was lost due to an accident, or expired due to the length of your ban) you can then start to broaden the range of cars you can consider in the future.
As specialists in Convicted Driver Insurance, you can rely on us at GSI Insurance Services (Southern) Ltd. regardless of what car you choose to drive. Give us a call on 0800 612 9376 or click “Get a Quote” to complete our online form.