Jump to navigation

Monday Morning Motor: Losses & Lessons

from Georgetown Insurance Agency

by Stacey Croteau on Oct 07, 2013

VEHICLES COVERED: 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing

WHAT WENT WRONG: As the popularity of classic cars grows and more collectors participate in events overseas, the odds of suffering a shipping mishap rise accordingly. It’s one thing to roll a classic onto a cross-country hauler that never leaves the pavement; another thing entirely when it is loaded into a container, hoisted by a crane and placed aboard a cargo ship – as the owner of a 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing can attest. At some point during the loading or unloading process, a steel crate containing the $700,000 Gullwing – which had been shipped from New Zealand to California – was dropped from a height of 10-25 feet.

DAMAGE/LOSS: The drop distance was considerable enough to cause substantial damage to the Gullwing’s body, frame and mechanical systems. In order to fully assess the damage (most of which was not easily identifiable), the vehicle had to be completely torn down. The car’s frame and transmission underwent magniflux inspection to determine whether there were any distortions, weak spots or cracks in any of the weld joints; the frame was sent to a specialist to make sure it was straight; the engine was torn down and fully inspected; and body work was required all around, along with a new paint job. Total cost of repair was nearly $500,000, which Hagerty paid – minus a $1,000 deductible and an unfathomably low $500 that the shipping company was required to pay, thanks to the “Carriage of Goods by Sea Act,” which limits the amount recoverable to $500 per 100 cubic feet.

LESSON: The lesson here couldn’t be clearer: There is no substitute for international shipping and touring insurance. If you choose to rely on the shipping company to cover your classic in the event of a claim, you’ll get $500 – along with a crateful of regret.

The real lesson is never leave your coverage up to someone else.  Know what you have (or do not have) and what you want.  It may cost a little bit more money but at the end of the day it is your investment so protect it.

Call today 978-352-8000 or email for more information on our Classic Car Insurance programs.


Article Comments

There are no comments yet.

Be the First to Leave a Comment

(Do not fill out this field, or your comment will be ignored. This field is here to help us protect against automated (spam) comments.

Your comment will show up once it has been reviewed.

Refer a Friend And we'll send you a free gift!

Tell your friends about us
We'll send you a gift card. More »

Bookmark our mobile site visit m.georgetowninsurance.com

Information you need, when and where you need it most. More »

Georgetown Insurance Agency, Inc.

Jump to navigation


Mon-Thu 8:30AM-5PM
Fridays 8:30 AM - 4 PM

Our location

Georgetown, MA office

10 West Main Street
Georgetown, MA 01833

Additional navigation:

Home page | Contact | About | Companies | Service | Privacy | Disclaimer | Search

© 2018 Georgetown Insurance Agency