Last year a car insurance firm published a list of its cheapest cars for a 17-year old to insure. Unsurprisingly, most are old and all are small.
The information within isn't unwarranted; I’m all too aware of the cost of insurance. It has just become more expensive for women due to an EU ruling that insurers can no longer offer them reduced rates.
But I think choosing your car purely on the basis of insurance cost is a dangerous game to play.
Of the top 10 cars mentioned by Adrian Flux Insurance as the cheapest to cover, half are classics. And the last time I checked, it’s this kind of old tin that’ll leave you digging deep to fix, weld and replace parts. So what you’ll save on insurance, you’ll be forking out to fix.
Safety standards have improved enormously over the past couple of decades, and the only cars here that have certainly been tested by EuroNCAP are the three star-rated Peugeot 107 and Hyundai Atoz. It took the Vauxhall Corsa four generations to gain a five-star rating, with a star added each time. It is unclear which generation the report focuses on. The same is true of the Vauxhall Agila.
In 2007, Which? magazine described the original Mini and Citroën 2CV as offering “frighteningly low” levels of protection. And as much as I love classics, there are few cars I’d rather crash than the tin-thin Fiat 126, original VW Beetle or Ford Anglia.
Yes, running costs are expensive. But there’s no way I’d let my 17-year old hoon around in a old motor built before the invention of the three-point seatbelt. Or a car with less than three NCAP stars, for that matter.
I prefer to think of a safer car – and those increased premiums – as an insurance to help them see their 18th birthday.
Model - Average insurance cost
Volkswagen Beetle - £1450
Peugeot 107 - £1880
Ford Anglia - £1890
Citroen 2CV - £1950
Vauxhall Agila - £1980
Vauxhall Corsa - £1980
Hyundai Amica - £2030
Hyundai Atoz - £2030
Fiat 126 - £2030
Austin Mini - £2150