Car Insurance Coverage for Off Road Driving


21 Jul 2023

Discover what off-road driving options are not covered by most insurance policies to ensure complete coverage. Get insured with Kotak General Insurance.

Off-roading or off-road driving is a favourite adventure activity for many. It is also a popular sport. It essentially involves driving the vehicles on tough terrain and roads made of rocks, snow and gravel. Some of the popular types of off-road driving activities include desert racing, dune bashing, rock racing, etc.

If you are an off-roading enthusiast, you may ask yourself whether your existing car insurance policy covers off-road driving. Let us find out.

Firstly, if you have already purchased car insurance coverage, great! It is a mandatory requirement for all car owners in India. According to the Motor Vehicles Act, driving without a valid insurance is a punishable offence. Apart from being compliant with the law, car insurance helps you get financial protection against the unfortunate incidents like accidents, theft, or damage to the car due to other causes.

When it comes to off-road driving, most insurance companies cover the damages that are accidental in nature. However, if you intentionally roll your car on an unsurfaced road or bash into another car, then the resultant damages will not be covered.

In simple words, you are eligible to get coverage against the unfortunate incidents under the policy while intentional damages are an exclusion. Additionally, if you participate in any off-road adventure activities like racing or dune bashing, the losses you may sustain will not be covered. Most motor insurance companies put off-road racing and other adventure sports as permanent exclusions under their car insurance plans.

Third-party car insurance vs comprehensive car insurance

Which policy should you buy for covering off-road driving?

A third-party car insurance will not cover the damages to your car or the injuries you may suffer due to off-roading. These policies only compensate the losses suffered by the third-party in the accident and not the damages to your car or you.

So, it is clear that to get coverage against off-road driving you must buy an own damage policy or a comprehensive car insurance policy. A comprehensive car insurance covers both third-party liabilities and damages to you and your car.

Whether you buy a third-party liability or a comprehensive car insurance, you must be aware of the certain permanent exclusions in the both the polices, which include:

• Damages suffered due to driving without a valid licence

• Accidental damages if you are found guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs or any other intoxicating substance

• Damages or accidents occurred due to mechanical or electrical breakdown

• The usual wear and tear

• Damages occurred to the unapproved modifications done to your vehicle

Add-ons to increase the coverage

Typically, a comprehensive car insurance policy does not cover accidental damage suffered due to off-road driving. However, you can enhance the coverage of your existing policy by purchasing add-ons or riders at an additional premium. Some of the add-ons that are worthy buying, include:

Roadside assistance

As the name suggests, this rider helps you get immediate assistance during a sudden breakdown of your car. Some of the services included under this add-on are battery repair or replacement, fixing or changing flat tyres, fuel delivery, etc.

Tyre protection cover

It helps you cover the damage sustained to the tyre and tube of the car.

Engine protection cover

This add-on cover helps you get assistance for repairing or replacing the car engine and its parts if it suffers damage due to oil spillage, mechanical or electrical breakdown, water ingression.

Final Word

Off-road driving can be fun and risky at the same time. Hence, it is paramount that you take the necessary safety measures and have robust car insurance coverage to take care of expenses if you meet with an accident.

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Team Kotak GIC

The content of this blog has been created and carefully reviewed by the esteemed team at Kotak General Insurance, with the sole purpose of providing valuable guidance and sharing insights on the importance of general insurance. Our objective is to assist users in making informed decisions when purchasing or renewing insurance policies for their cars, bikes, and health. Our expertly curated information aims to empower our readers with the knowledge they need to protect their valuable assets and financial interests.