Does Car Modification Really Affect Your Insurance Premium?

Charlotte Miller

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Vehicle modifications are additions or adaptations that alter your car’s looks or structure. Many car owners in New South Wales, of both old and new vehicles, are looking to spice up their ride in this way. Adding spoilers or huge wheels to grab attention on the go is one play at vehicle modifications, for example. 

These may look great, but it is important to know they could very well influence your car insurance quote. Choose wisely and have all the pros and cons at hand before going ahead. 

Anyone has the liberty to customize their ride with accessories to add a fun element or improve its functionality. Any add-ons provided by your car’s manufacturer would have their approval, and they would blend harmoniously with the car’s other components. Just know that certain insurers may not look upon them so favorably. 

In fact, you may have to pay more for the best car insurance if you march ahead with the modifications.

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You may want to supplement your car with:

  • Neon lights
  • Tinted windows
  • Turbo/superchargers
  • Custom paints
  • Sport seats
  • Wider tires
  • Wheel modifications
  • Revamped car interior
  • Nonstandard engine replacements
  • Car stickers

Now, coming to how your insurer may view this scenario:

  • A flashy car is a highly vulnerable object, more prone to theft and vandalism.
  • A car that has been modified to go faster, even if done legally, can be seen as a higher risk for being involved in an accident.
  • The cost of fixing accidental damage to custom components can be very high.
  • Repair and replacement costs may rise with each extra feature added in.

From every perspective, before going ahead with changes to your car, consult an insurer offering Third Party Fire and Theft Insurance to discuss how they would view any modifications. It may also change your mind, and you may step down from your decision to have your ride customized.

On top of that, if you have transformed your vehicle all by yourself, you may forfeit any insurance coverage provided by your car insurer. Please hand it over to professionals who are excellent at their jobs and, again, speak to your car insurance company beforehand.

Furthermore, you want to ensure you have every chance at an insurance claim being accepted. If you don’t disclose all the information about your modified car it could very well result in your claim getting declined. Once you have encountered a rejection/cancellation, it may be hard to find well-priced, quality insurance in the future.

Some illegal modifications in some states and territories are too-dark tinted windows, incorrect wheel rim size, too-dark tinting to headlight and tail light covers, race seat belt harnesses, seat modifications that don’t have a modification plate, supercharged/turbocharged engines without a modification plate, vehicles with bodies lowered too close to the road, roll cage additions, etc.

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The implications of violating your state or territory’s rules around modifications can include:

  • Issuance of fine
  • Revocation of registration of the vehicle
  • Seizing the vehicle
  • Cancellation of existing insurance policy
  • Denial of a car insurance claim
  • Denial of cover in case of new insurance policy

The most common modifications permitted by the insurance companies include tow bars, roof racks, bicycle racks, and alloy wheels.

If you are in New South Wales it would be best if you verified with the local transport authority and your insurer before you make modification decisions.

Treat the above instructions as your Bible and stay honest when buying a car insurance policy, or else when the moment to claim arrives, you may find yourself deep down in a legal soup.