Classic car and 4×4 modifications

Classic car and 4×4 lovers the world over have always sought to modify their cars in some shape or form. There are purists who will claim to never dream of doing such a thing, but for most of us, it is sometimes a necessity rather than a choice.

From driver safety to vehicle security, there are modifications that will always be needed to the motors that we adore, especially as they get older.

Then there are the power mods and the aesthetic mods we may choose to make, from new engines to the humble re-spray.

These things will affect insurance premiums, but we can help keep costs to a minimum, because we understand classic motoring and modifications.

5 Mods that will affect your classic insurance

We recently put together a list of the top five modifications we deal with and how these affect premiums. Here is a summary.


It might surprise you to hear that re-spraying can affect your insurance premium and is classed as a modification. However a simple refresh with the same colour shouldn’t affect your insurance or even a change of colour providing you inform the DVLA. Pearlescent or two tone changes are one of the few aesthetic modifications that could affect your insurance costs as well as altering your excess. Any increase should only be to do with the effect the re-spray will have on the value of your classic.

An expensive, high quality re-spray could increase the value by a couple of thousand pounds, so in turn the risk of theft and repair costs will be higher to the insurer.


As newer cars move into the classic car realm, more and more vehicles are fitted with some sort of computerised control. These are usually pre-set by the factory. However, some owners like to get these upgraded or remapped to increase performance.

Again, the increase to your premium and excess should only be small.


Many owners replace their classic’s engine with a higher powered alternative if they’re looking for more torque or speed. An engine replacement will have more of an effect on your insurance than re-mapping or re-spraying, but the increase should still not be eye-watering.


Stage 1, the lower end of the tuning scene, is the collection of mods to improve the overall performance. These include things like exhausts, fuel pressure regulators and blow off valves.

This modification will have an effect on the price of your insurance well as the potential to increase the excess.


A Stage 2 upgrade is a little more aggressive than a Stage 1 and will promote larger power gains. Stage 2 will include fuelling modifications and some engine strengthening and dismantling.

This type of performance modification will have the highest impact on your insurance premium. You would definitely want to look at going with a specialist insurer whose policies can cater for the additional risks.

Modifying 4x4s

As autumn sets in, 4×4 season is kicking off too. Our wonderful off-roaders are also subject to a range of modifications for various reasons. These may be improvements made to the vehicle for off road use or changes to accommodate things like camping materials as we get ready for our seasonal adventures.

Heritage provides modified 4×4 insurance as well as cover for classic cars and motorbikes. Learn more about our 4×4 cover here

If you’re thinking of making modifications to a classic or a 4×4 but you’re unsure about your premiums, call us today on 0121 248 9304.