Classic Motorcycle Insurance

Classic Motorcycle Insurance

Insuring a classic motorcycle is often a rewarding experience if you’ve got a modern bike in the garage too, simply because it’s quite often cheaper – particularly if you have a limited mileage policy.

But you don’t even need to ride your bike in order to insure it – there are storage policies that offer cover while you’re working on it or just keeping it safe and sound.

What age does a motorbike need to be for classic insurance?

There’s no single answer for this, as it will vary between insurers, but the general rule is that your bike must be at least 20 years old to be considered a classic. Some insurers may accept younger bikes as classics, some may say your bike has to be 25 years old. Always check with each insurer what their limit is.

Why is classic motorbike insurance cheaper?

There are a few reasons classic motorcycle insurance is cheaper than for modern bikes – the chief one being there aren’t as many claims involving vintage bikes. Classic bike owners generally take extra care of their machines and cover less mileage. Fixing a maximum annual mileage is one typical way that you can save even more on insurance costs.

The market for stolen classic motorcycles is also tiny compared to that for new superbikes, say, and this decreases the risk for an insurer to quote against. This doesn’t mean however that classic bikes are immune to theft.

Do I need classic motorcycle insurance if I don’t ride it?

Many classic motorbikes are never ridden on the road, but still need insurance. Whether you’re doing a winter restoration project or you just take your MOT exempt concours classic round the show circuit on the back of a trailer, you’re probably going to be looking at a ‘storage policy’ – which covers the bike for theft or fire damage.

Specialist classic motorcycle insurance brokers are the best bet for this kind of cover, which will be cheaper than a policy that includes road use.

If you do ever transport the bike on a trailer it is important to be clear whether your storage policy covers damage in transit or away from the home, or whether your car policy (which will need to include towing cover) will cover damage to whatever is being towed. One of them will need to! If you’re still unsure on what cover is best for you check out our article on motorcycle insurance cover types explained. 

Classic Motorcycle Insurance


What’s a typical vintage bike?

A proper classic motorcycle, like a 1959 Triumph Bonneville T120R could cost as much as £26k, but there are plenty of more affordable options. Yamaha’s RD family in the 70s can stoke up some two-stroke fun and games and a decent 1977 RD400, for example, can be picked up for about £5000.

A lot of riders want to rekindle fond memories of their misspent and hunt out FS-1Es or Suzuki’s AP50. But for little bikes, albeit with big hearts, you could still have to fork out £2500 for a minter.

Honda’s CB family offers good value and the chance to invest wisely. A 1970 CB400 four is a decent enough machine and £2k should see you in the saddle. GO for CB500 or even the CB750 and you’ll need to recover the cash from underneath your mattress! A well-restored CB750 from the 70s could cost more than £10k!

Of course, the older the bike, the more research is needed to ensure you are getting what you think you are getting. Are those pipes really standard? Is it definitely a UK model and not a US or Japanese import?

Classic Motorcycle Insurance


How can I get cheaper classic bike insurance?

You can compare and save on comprehensive classic bike insurance cover with MCN Compare. We compare against all the top insurers in one place to ensure you get the cheapest cover possible. See for yourself, get an online quote with MCN Compare (online and over the phone).