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Chicagoland MG Club: Driveline
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  Chicagoland MG Club:Club Info

What Is Your MG Really Worth?

By Larry Crain

Now that the '99 driving season is about to begin, among the other signs of spring is that call to the insurance man to reactivate your full coverage on the MG. As our cars age, the issue of insurance coverage can become more complicated, especially for those cars 25 years old and older. I discovered this by accident in the act of changing insurance agents. For over 12 years, I had paid for full coverage on the MG during driving season, just like on my "regular" car. I happened to ask the new insurance agent how the MG would be valued in the event of. . . you know . . . (perish the thought!) . . . a "total". The answer was not reassuring, since "Blue Book" value is not maintained for twenty-something cars, and certainly would not cover the many hours and dollars' worth of TLC lavished upon my MG over the years.

The only way around that problem is to purchase "stated value" coverage, and to obtain that, I had to get the car appraised. Chicago Car Exchange, in Lake Bluff on Route 176 near I-294 and next to Lamb's Farm, did the job for $75. Be sure to call ahead to be sure that the appraiser is there (847) 680-1950. This place is worth a visit even if you're not getting an appraisal, since they mainly display collectable cars from the '20's to the '70's in a museum format, although they are all for sale. The shock occurred when the insurance man said that, in view of the appraisal, my premium would double to $385 every six months! Once I calmed down, I was told that the reason for the increase was that my '74 B was 25 years old and considered an antique. The insurance underwriters assumed that cars of this vintage are rare, polished and pampered instead of driven, and experience trouble locating parts. When I explained the reality of the MG parts situation, and the large numbers still on the road, he agreed to revisit this with the underwriters.

Fortunately, reason prevailed, the underwriters recognized a special class for MG's, and my premium was reduced to about $250 every six months for full coverage, and $110 for winter storage. That seems more reasonable for an "antique" car valued at $6500, and now I know how much the car is worth, in the case of the "unmentionable" happening. Since I've gotten the MG category recognized, if you're interested, the company is Farmer's Insurance, and my agent is Mike Economoy (847) 291-9971. On the other hand, if you've found a better deal, I'd sure like to hear about it.

©1999 Chicagoland MG Club, All rights reserved.