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The Pros of buying a Cat N Car

Cat N marker can sometimes be given to cars with relatively minor damage. An older, low-value car might be written off after a light scrape in a car park, simply because the cost of processing the insurance claim exceeds the car’s value.

Why should I buy a written-off car to repair?

  • Buying and repairing a category N write-off – also referred to in the insurance trade as a total loss – can be a savvy option, especially if you are planning to keep the car for several years.
  • Many perfectly serviceable cars are written off for items such as damage to headlights, bumpers or bolt-on panels, which have a high cost as new retail parts from a preferred repairer. Those same parts can be bought via specialist part suppliers, and if you have the skill and time (as we do) – you can save thousands over the retail value of an undamaged car.
  • With the right level of technical know-how, a Cat N car can represent exceptional value for money, providing customers with the opportunity to own their favourite car model at a fraction of the cost. 

What is Cat N and what does it mean?

In October 2017, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) introduced new car insurance write-off categories for road vehicles, replacing the previous Cat C and Cat D classifications with Cat S and Cat N respectively. The new categories were endorsed by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) and the Department for Transport (DfT). Both Cat S and Cat N were introduced to better reflect the growing complexities of repairing 21st century vehicles.

When a car insurance claim is made for a vehicle following an accident or damage due to theft, flood or fire, the insurer will review the vehicle’s damage to ascertain whether the cost of repair is worthwhile – aligned to the vehicle’s value.

Since October 2017, accident-damaged vehicles that are deemed a write-off by an insurer but do not have structural or chassis damage have been classified Cat N. That’s because, despite the car’s structural integrity being intact, the repair costs would still be greater than the cost of replacing the vehicle altogether for the claimant.


What merits structural damage on a vehicle write-off?

Structural damage to a vehicle is basically damage to any part or component that is part of the main body of the vehicle or used to maintain the body’s structural integrity. Components or parts that are bolted onto a car’s structure or chassis are not deemed part of its structure or frame.

Structural components that commonly sustain damage include:

  • Suspension mounts
  • Lower and upper frame rails
  • A, B and C pillars
  • Rear window frames
  • Rocker panels

Here at CatCarz we buy Category N vehicles from Insurance companies and repair them to a professional standard using a handful of carefully selected bodyshops. We have over 20 years combined experience in the motor trade and guarantee that our replacement of panels and repair techniques are of the highest quality.
We are so confident in our vehicles that we offer six months £1000 per fault warranty with Warranty Solutions, an award winning warranty provider. We are probably one of the very few Repairing Direct Dealers to be able to offer warranties on category N cars in the UK adding complete peace of mind for our customers.

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