Fireman’s Fund Picks American Collectors Insurance to Provide Collector Vehicle Coverage

May 4, 2004

Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company has chosen American Collectors Insurance Inc. a specialty niche managing general agent – as exclusive provider for its co-branded collector vehicle program that insures the recreational driving of classic and collectible vehicles.

Qualifying vehicles include classic cars, trucks and motorcycles, muscle cars, custom classics, street rods, replicas, antique “brass and wood” vehicles, antique tractors-even military vehicles and antique fire trucks.

The new collector vehicle program targets quality-conscious individuals who want to drive their collector vehicles for pleasure without having a traditional “attendance constraint” restricting driving to only to-or-from a car show. Instead, as long as the use is not for general transportation, the customer can enjoy recreational driving up to 2,500 miles annually with a 5,000-mile option available in most states for the more dedicated enthusiast.

“Now, Fireman’s Fund customers have access to coverage for their collector vehicles through their Fireman’s Fund independent agent, allowing our agents to target an important market need,” said Scott Garfield, vice president of sales and marketing for Fireman’s Fund Personal Insurance. “Our research revealed that a collector vehicle program delivers the tailored coverages and ease of insurance delivery that our customers expect.”

Fireman’s Fund chose American Collectors Insurance (ACI) because, Garfield said, “ACI is the most experienced and competitive provider for our customer base, delivering exceptional expertise, service, claims handling, and competitive pricing.”

The American Collectors Insurance coverage is offered on a co-branded basis to the 1,400 appointed independent agents of Fireman’s Fund Personal Insurance. Agents have access to on-line quoting and telephone quoting, full commissions on new and renewal business, direct billing, 24-hour binding, marketing materials, and a customer and agent hotline open weekdays until 7:30 p.m. (ET).

“We are especially pleased with this latest alliance with a major insurer because the $3.5-billion collector car industry is growing 10 percent annually,” said Jill Bookman, CEO of American Collectors Insurance. She noted that “collector vehicle coverage has become a gateway product for agents targeting customers with discretionary income. In fact, the average collector owns several collector vehicles, a home valued at $250,000, and an average household income of $100,000 plus.”

Trade publications estimate there are 14 million pre-1976 collector cars and 9,000 car clubs in the U.S. “Many of these vehicle hobbyists could save money and have broader coverage with a specialty policy,” said Bookman. “Agents tell us that a collector vehicle policy is a turnkey sale that pleases customers and yields strong renewals.”

Deductibles are negotiable to suit the customer’s wish for lower premiums, starting at zero (in most states) for original unmodified vehicles. The collector vehicle program comes with agreed value coverage which guarantees a vehicle’s full insured value in case of a total loss-and no need for appraisal. The program offers “inflation guard” coverage at no additional cost to automatically increase a vehicle’s value by 2 percent per quarter, to a maximum of 8 percent per year (agreed value and inflation guard not available in Mass., Texas and Va).

The coverage offers economical “collector” rates ($200 average premium). The program offers automatic coverage for 30 days-with limits up to $25,000-on qualifying vehicles added to a collection during the policy term. And should damage or loss occur to a classic spare part, the collector vehicle program provides up to $500 spare parts coverage in most states at no additional cost.

American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida is the underwriter of the collector vehicle program, except in Minnesota where the underwriter is the American Security Insurance Company. Both are “A” rated by A.M. Best Co.

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