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Everything you need to know about automatic car insurance

Everything you need to know about automatic car insurance

If you have a preference for driving either a manual or an automatic car, you may be wondering if automatic cars are cheaper to insure.  
 
You may drive an automatic car for other reasons, like health issues, disability, or personal circumstances. Either way, you’ll be keen to know if driving an automatic car can save you money.  

Daniel Hutson
From the Motor team
2
minute read
posted 21 JANUARY 2020

Are automatic cars cheaper to insure? 

Automatic cars can be significantly more expensive to insure than manual cars.  
 
But automatic car ownership is on the increase in the UK, with the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) estimating there are now over 8.4 million on the road. That’s around a quarter of all cars. 

Why is automatic car insurance more expensive? 

Because automatic cars are usually more expensive to buy, the car insurance premiums tend to be higher. This is to cover the cost of any damage, or the cost of a replacement vehicle. For example, an automatic gearbox is more complex than a manual one and so would usually cost more to replace.  
 
Also, if you have a licence that only allows you to drive an automatic, you will probably pay a higher premium. This is because more claims are made by drivers with this licence type. 

Is it more expensive to be insured to learn to drive in an automatic car? 

It’s widely considered to be easier to learn in an automatic car. That’s why many new drivers choose cars with automatic gearboxes when they are starting out. But car insurance may be higher for learner and provisional drivers who choose to learn in an automatic car.  

How much more expensive is it to insure the same car with an automatic versus a manual gearbox? 

It depends on the type of vehicle you drive. But the difference in car insurance premiums can be significant when you compare the same car with an automatic versus manual gearbox.  
 
For example, we found it was more expensive to insure an automatic Volkswagen Golf (average premium of £780 versus £609.)** and also more expensive to insure an Audi A3 than a manual (£770 versus £706)** 
 
**Average price amount based on the top-five quotes from Compare the Market data from 1 Oct to 1 Jan 2020. You may find a cheaper or more expensive quote based on your circumstances. A lower number of quotes may exaggerate the results for some vehicle types. 

How can I reduce my premiums if I drive an automatic car? 

If you need to use an automatic car for health or personal reasons, there are other ways you can look to reduce the overall cost of your car insurance.  
 
For example, you could take a look at: 

Reducing your annual mileage can help bring your automatic car insurance premium down. Opting to have a black box fitted – known as telematics car insurance – can do that too. 

How do I find the right automatic car insurance for me? 

One way to find good value car insurance for your automatic vehicle is to shop around for quotes. Start comparing with Compare the Market today. 

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