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First car insurance

Compare cheap car insurance for your first car

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Insurance for your first car

Buying your first car can be an exciting time - you might have recently passed your test or are looking for greater independence. In other cases a lifestyle change, such as moving out of a city to a rural area, getting a new job which involves commuting, or starting a family, might mean it’s the first time you’ve needed your own car. 

Whatever the reason, it’s important to choose the right car and shop around to find the best possible insurance policy to keep costs low.

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How much is automatic car insurance?

There are three main types of automatic car insurance to choose from:

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    Fully comprehensive

    Fully comprehensive covers you for any damage to another vehicle caused by you and any damage to your own car. In most cases, although this type of cover is more generous it costs less than third party insurance. This is because statistically third party cover is taken out by drivers who are more likely to make a claim, pushing up the costs.

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    Third party, fire and theft

    Third-party, fire and theft covers you in some circumstances – if you cause damage to another car, if your car is damaged by fire or if it is stolen, but not for other claims. It doesn’t cover you if you are injured or your car is damaged by another driver for example, or if you cause damage to your own car.

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    Third party only

    Third-party only car insurance covers you if someone makes a claim against you – for example if you cause a collision or damage to another vehicle. This is the minimum legal requirement to drive on UK roads. But third party insurance won’t cover any damage to you or your car.

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What will insurance cost for my first car?

The premium you are quoted by insurers will depend on many factors, including your age, when you passed your driving test, the type of car you drive, what you will use your car for and how far you will drive each year, for example.

New drivers, who have held their licence for less than a year are likely to pay the highest insurance for their first car. The average annual first car premium for a newly qualified driver is £1,698, according to MoneySuperMarket data. This is for a fully comprehensive policy.

Premiums will usually start to fall the longer you have held your licence. But even if you have held your driving licence for a number of years, if you have never been insured on a car before you won’t have a no-claims history so this will make your premiums more expensive.

What are the cheapest first cars to insure?

The most popular first cars tend to be smaller, less powerful models that are cheaper to insure. Among the most popular first cars chosen by new drivers are the Vauxhall Corsa, Ford Fiesta and Volkswagen Polo, for example. But though these car brands are popular they are not always the cheapest to insure. 

If you want to keep premiums low there are cheaper models to insure. Data collected by MoneySuperMarket shows the Hyundai i10 and Fiat 500 are among the cheapest first cars for newly qualified drivers for insurance premiums.

A Hyundai i10 costs, on average, £1,189 per year to insure with a fully comprehensive policy, for a driver who has held their licence for less than one year. But this falls to £727 for those driving the same car but who have held their licence for between one and three years and £621 for those who have been driving between three and five years, on average. 

1MoneySuperMarket data collected between July and September 2020 and correct as of December 2020. Based on drivers with a full UK licence who have held their licence for less than 12 months.

Car model Average premium1
Hyundai i10 £1,189
Fiat 500 £1,207
Citroen C1 £1,216
Kia Picanto £1,218
Nissan Juke £1,229

How can I get cheaper insurance for a first car?

There are many factors that affect the price of your car insurance premium, including the type of car you have.

In general, automatic cars are more expensive to insure than manuals. This is for several reasons:

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Take out telematics

Fitting a black box to your first car allows your insurer to monitor your driving habits so sensible drivers earn lower premiums

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Pay a higher excess

Choosing to have a higher voluntary excess on your insurance can bring premiums down

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Cut your mileage

Lower annual mileage usually means a lower premium. Less time on the road means you’re less likely to be in an incident and make a claim

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Choose your first car carefully

Cheaper, small car models tend to be safer to drive, cheaper to repair after bumps and scrapes and less attractive to thieves 

What do I need to get a first car insurance quote?

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    Your car details

    The make, model and the registration number if you know it. We’ll also need the age of your first car and any modifications you’ve made

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    Information about you

    This includes your age and address, job, when you passed your driving test plus any additional drivers you want to add to the policy

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    How you’ll use your car

    Commuting to work or just for social trips? We will also ask how many miles you think you’ll drive in a year

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    Where your car is parked at night

    You will need to let us know where the car will be kept overnight – parked on the street or in a garage, for example, as this affects the security risk

Which car insurance brands do we work with?

Find cheap car insurance quotes and stay on the road with MoneySuperMarket

company logo for Admiralcompany logo for esurecompany logo for one callcompany logo for hastingscompany logo for aacompany logo for lvcompany logo for Churchill
Andy G Teasdale

Our expert says

"Getting your first car is exciting and memorable – whether you’re a brand new driver or you’ve held your licence for years but never owned a car. Once you’ve chosen your first new wheels it is important to seek out the best value car insurance by shopping around. Remember to look at all aspects of a policy - the level of cover and the excess, for example, and not just the price. "

- Andy G Teasdale, product manager of car insurance

What additional policy features do I need for my first car?

There are many factors that affect the price of your car insurance premium, including the type of car you have.

In general, automatic cars are more expensive to insure than manuals. This is for several reasons:

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Breakdown cover

Pays out if you’re killed or injured in a road accident

It depends how long you have been driving. Telematics can help to bring down the cost of insurance for young drivers who have recently passed their test and might be considered high risk. This technology involves fitting a tracker or ‘black box’ in your car which monitors your driving. It tracks things such as how fast you drive, what time of day and for how long you drive and reports this data back to the insurer.

If you are not a brand new driver – you may have been insured as a named driver on other cars - there is probably no need to install telematics or use this type of policy for your first car as your premium will already be a bit lower than if you were a new driver.

In many cases if you can add a more experienced driver to your policy as a named driver then it could reduce the cost of your premium. This is because the insurer takes this to mean that it won’t just be you driving the car all the time so statistically you are less likely to make a claim.

Drivers can sometimes build up a car insurance no claims discount (NCD) as a named driver on someone else’s policy. But usually a NCD only applies to the main driver or policyholder.

Some insurers will accept the no claims history of a named driver, but generally the insurer will only reward the NCD discount if the named driver also buys their first car insurance with them.

You must have insurance in place after buying your first car and before you take it on the road. Third party insurance is the legal minimum level of cover you must have when driving – it covers you if someone else makes a claim against you for damage to their car or personal injury, for example.

Yes. If you have most of the details about the car you want to buy you can run searches on MoneySuperMarket to get an idea of the cost. Once you have made a decision about the car you want to buy you can gather all the information you will need to buy appropriate cover for your first car - then you’ll be ready to drive it away as soon as you have bought it.

You will need insurance to drive your new car home. If you don’t know the car you are going to buy and can’t organise cover in advance, then the dealership may be able to sell you short-term cover which enables you to get your car home.

 

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