Top Gear fans shouldn’t get carried away modifying without adequate car insurance

30 October 2007 / by None
Any modifications can affect the validity of a car insurance policy, not just turning a truck into a boat or fitting a wood burning stove into a Mercedes like Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May - the presenters of BBC2’s Top Gear - have been known to do, warns

All changes that are made to a car – no matter how big or small – should be declared to car insurance providers, otherwise owners stand to be holding an invalid car insurance policy if they have to make a claim. Companies will not pay out for damage caused by or to undisclosed changes, and not everyone has the BBC behind them.

Hayley Parsons, managing director at, comments, “While people often think about young drivers with body kits, exhaust systems or suspension changes, in reality it is just as likely that the average new car buyer opting for alloy wheels, a satellite navigation system or leather upholstery in the showroom could get caught out.

“Many drivers do not realise that any changes you make need to be declared to your insurer. If you don't, you won't be insured for the upgrades you've made, and the value of the car will be based on the factory-standard fittings.

“For many people, their car is a way of expressing their personality and they are prepared to spend thousands of pounds to improve both the look and the performance of their vehicle.

"Often they may only add a few pounds to your annual premium but the cost of being underinsured could ultimately be far greater.”

Find out more about modified car insurance

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