CanCanCover.com works with specialist insurance partners who are used to providing imported car insurance quotes for cars imported from Asia, the US and mainland Europe.
It is increasingly popular to buy cars imported from places such as Japan. In some cases the appeal is that imported cars can tend to have lower mileages and better specifications than their domestic cousins but they still need to be insured correctly.
There are two types of car import, grey imports and parallel imports.
Cars that are classified as ‘grey imports’ are cars that were originally built in non-EU countries such as the US and Canada, China, and Japan. If the imported car comes with a higher spec than the European counterpart, this could mean higher insurance premiums, especially if the imported car in question is deemed as attractive to thieves.
The other type of imported cars are known as ‘parallel imports’. These are cars that, although imported from within the EU, still have the same or incredibly similar specifications of models found in the UK. EU regulations state that every vehicle sold within Europe must pass certain safety requirements for areas such as passenger safety and EU emissions. One such safety regulation body is NCAP, who organise crash-tests and provide motoring consumers with a realistic and independent assessment of the safety performance of some of the most popular cars sold in Europe.
Because parallel imports must meet EU safety standards, import car insurance policies could be cheaper than a non-EU, ‘grey import’. Because of this, insurers are generally happier to insure parallel imports, and car owners will find that the cost of cover is not as high as a non-EU import car.
One reason why imported car insurance may be more expensive than regular car insurance for domestic vehicles, is finding replacement parts for the vehicle when required. Parts may be harder to source, different regulations may mean certain parts aren’t approved for use in the owner’s country, or the parts may simply be more expensive to ship from other parts of the world. That isn’t the only sticking point when it comes to repairing foreign vehicles. Depending on local garages and dealerships, it may prove difficult to find a mechanic with the necessary knowledge to be able to work on a foreign car.