Posts tagged import car insurance
After lots of Eastern promise over the last few years, there hasn’t, as yet been much sign of the influx of Chinese cars we have been promised. There have, of course, been hundreds of Chinese bikes, and Bikesure has been offering Chinese Scooter Insurance for years, but cars have been distinctly thin on the ground.
Now, though, there has been confirmation that at least one Chinese marque has secured a distributor. Great Wall have confirmed that they have done a deal with independent distributors IM Group, who also look after the smaller Japanese brands Isuzu, Daihatsu and Subaru. Cars will be on sale in the UK from 2011.
So what can we expect from the Great Wall range? Well up to now they have been best known for trucks, but they caused quite a splash at the Shanghai motor show. A big failing up to now with Chinese cars is that few have reached the exacting safety and emissions standards now demanded in the EU, but Great Wall are confident that their 6 launch models (well 5 plus a 4×4 version of 1) will secure type approval.
First up is the Great Wall Peri, which has an engine from Mitsubishi, looks suspiciously like a Fiat Panda, and also comes in a 4×4 variant! In fact, that is going to be the main problem, as Fiat have currently secured an injunction preventing its import into the EU…
Then there is the i7, aka Great Wall Phenom. Apparently they couldn’t decide whether to name it after an Intel or AMD processor! These have engines developed in house and are being positioned at a higher price point making it a ‘sort of premium’ hatch.
The Xuan Li, or Great Wall Florid, is another smallish hatchback. Apparently the name in Chinese sounds confusingly similar to ‘Yaris,’ and by a huge coincidence the front end styling appears remarkably similar to that of a Toyota Yaris, which has led to further legal issues!
The Great Wall Cowry is a compact MPV fitted with a 2 litre Mitsubishi engine. There are three trim levels, the highest of which – Super Luxury – is equipped with a KARAOKE PLAYER! Again some have detected styling influence from the Toyota Scion Xb.
The final model is another MPV which looks even more like the aforementioned Scion, the mystifyingly named Great Wall Cool Bear. This spacious model with its angular design is likely to abstract sales from the Kia Soul and Nissan Cube, especially as the price could be lower than £9,000.
In short there are still obstacles to overcome, mostly to do with intellectual property, but if these can be surmounted, the Chinese car could take off in a big way. In the absence of a dealer network, you’d be a brave soul to import a Chinese car privately, but if you do, you can count on Adrian Flux to offer competitive import chinese car insurance.
Apparently Bollywood is all set to do a remake of the Italian Job, which is going to literally be an all singing and dancing affair, and may even be filmed outside India.
Now, everyone knows that the real stars of the original Italian Job were the cars. Not just the Minis – who can forget the Lambo Miura, the two E-Type Jaguar cars and the Aston DB4, which all had great supporting roles, as well as the Land Rover, the Alfa Romeo Giulia police cars, the numerous Fiat 500s and Dinos, not to mention the Pakistani ambassador’s Daimler and the Morris Minor van that got more than its bloody doors blown off.
So for me, at least, the big question is, which Indian cars are they going to use to replace the Mini Coopers. Let’s have a look at the contenders.
First up is Tata – their Indica is the most popular new car in India, but they don’t appear outside of the subcontinent too often. Probably more likely that Tata would use the forthcoming £1,200 Tata Nano, which Tata hope to export all over the world. It certainly has cute looks, but the really small wheels might get in the way of some stunts.
An Indian car (technically a quadricycle) that already does appear abroad, and is very common in London already is the Reva G Wiz – even tinier than the Nano, the electric power plant might make for some quiet chase scenes, and you’d have to hope the batteries lasted back to the Autostrada. On the plus side, you’d have no trouble fitting these onto a bus – in fact they’d probably fit in the buggy space.
The San Storm on the other hand is a two seater convertible, built on a Clio chassis. It nearly got sold here as a revival of the Reliant Scimitar name, but the deal fell through. With a shell made entirely of fibreglass, might not be too useful for a film involving as many scrapes and bumps as the Italian Job.
The Maruti A-Star is a rebadged Suzuki Alto – and the Works versions of those cars were pretty sporty. Maruti also sells a rebadged Suzuki Swift, which has certainly built up a worldwide cult following, so may be in with a shot.
Finally, and an outside bet, how about the Hindustani Ambassador? Based on the 1957 Morris Oxford Mk III, this car is still in production, and although it is a bit big it’s the definitive Indian motor – Hindustani really made it their own. You can get a version with a turbocharged 1.8 Isuzu engine under the hood too.
Officially or not, all of these cars are available to buy in the UK, but some insurance companies will be left scratching their heads if you try and insure one. Fortunately, Adrian Flux can help, whether you need electric car insurance or Indian import car insurance, so if you fancy an Indian car, make sure you give us a call for a quote on 08000 83 88 33.
If you have anything slightly unusual is that they can be completely unhelpful. Seeing that GoCompare had added a few specialists to their panel, like A-Plan, Express and Sureterm, I though I’d run through a quote on a lightly modified Nissan Silvia, to see what their prices were like.
Unfortunately, although it happily lets you fill in all your details, it then brings up the supremely unhelpful list below. None of their panel, specialists included, could quote it. Nice one GoCompare!
It just goes to show that if you want a quote on something even a little bit out of the ordinary, you are currently still best off leaving the aggregators for Mondeo man and giving a genuine specialist broker a call. (Our number is 08000 83 88 33)
… UPDATE 16/10/2008 …
I think some people thought I was having a pop at either GoCompare or the specialists currently on their panel. My point was really that the aggregator model, whilst very useful in many circumstances is not any help in the many cases where there is anything even slightly unusual.
I have recommended elsewhere on this blog that customers should always try to include a mixture of aggregators, direct writers and brokers when they are shopping around – If you have a classic, modified, imported or kit car, or if you are a younger driver, have convictions, female or mature, brokers can ask the questions that aggregators can’t or don’t – and that even includes the ones I listed.
Having seen the photos from the flux babes photoshoot, the IT department here at Flux fancied their own shot at glamour modelling stardom.
Here is the video from their very own photoshoot!
The R34 Nissan Skyline GT-R is an awesome car. And if you’ve maxed it out with a ton of performance modifications, taking it up to 420bhp in the process, it can probably knock spots off of most supercars you could mention on any track.
Sadly, though for one Jap Import fan, the joys of owning this fearsome beast of a car have come to a premature and unhappy end.
As the clearly disgruntled seller discovered, if you’re in a relationship, your dreams may be cruelly dashed:
Reason for Selling: Purchased without proper consent from the wife. Apparently “do whatever the F**K you want” does not mean what I thought.
So there you are. If you want to purchase the car and give it a good home, just make sure you check with the missus first.
Although as the owner points out insurance for a Nissan Skyline can be a tad expensive and, if you’re young, difficult to even find. Fortunately, Adrian Flux can fix you up with some modified Nissan Skyline insurance, or indeed insurance for any japanese import.