In the midst of challenging times for the car insurance industry, Admiral, a prominent car insurer, has managed to turn a profit despite insuring 380,000 fewer vehicles. This surprising achievement comes as the company faced high inflation and rising costs, leading to a significant increase in premiums. In this article, we will delve into the details of Admiral’s success, explore the reasons behind the rise in premiums, and examine the impact on consumers.

Admiral’s Profit Growth

Admiral reported a 4% increase in group pre-tax profit during the first half of the year, reaching £233.9 million. This growth is particularly remarkable considering the substantial decline in the number of vehicles covered by the insurer. While the number of insured vehicles dropped by 380,000 in the first six months of the year, Admiral managed to maintain profitability through a strategic increase in premiums.

Premium Increases and Rising Costs

The decision to raise premiums by 20% was driven by the need to offset high inflation and rising costs within the industry. This move was not unprecedented, as Admiral had already implemented a 20% premium rise in the preceding six months. Consequently, the cost of car insurance has surged by approximately 44% over the course of a year, significantly impacting consumers’ budgets.

Customer Response and Market Challenges

The steep increase in premiums has not been without consequences. Admiral witnessed a 7% decrease in customer numbers compared to the previous year. However, the company remains steadfast in its commitment to maintaining profitable insurance contracts, even if it means losing some customers along the way. These market challenges highlight the growing pressure on consumers to manage rising costs amid other financial pressures.

Industry-Wide Premium Increases

Admiral’s experience is not unique within the car insurance industry. According to the Office for National Statistics, car insurance premiums across the industry rose by 53.4% in the 12 months leading up to July. This widespread increase in premiums can be attributed to sustained cost pressures, including higher energy costs, increased paint and material costs, and a rise in the average price of secondhand cars.

Impact on Consumers

The surge in car insurance premiums has significant implications for consumers, particularly younger drivers who face steep premium hikes. Compare the Market, a price comparison website, reported that the average annual car insurance premium in the UK has reached £743. This represents a £208 increase or a 39% rise compared to the previous year. As a result, it has become more crucial than ever for consumers to shop around and compare prices in order to secure the best possible deal.

Market Performance and Future Outlook

Admiral’s ability to generate profit in the face of declining vehicle coverage underscores the resilience of the company. However, the current market environment remains challenging, as evidenced by the industry’s worst-performing year in a decade. Insurers paid out £1.10 in claims and costs for every £1 received in premiums in 2022. As consumers continue to grapple with rising costs, it remains to be seen how the car insurance market will evolve in the coming years.


Admiral’s ability to achieve profit growth despite insuring fewer vehicles showcases the company’s strategic approach to navigating a challenging industry landscape. The decision to increase premiums by 20% reflects the need to offset high inflation and rising costs. However, this rise in premiums has placed a significant burden on consumers, particularly younger drivers. As the car insurance market continues to face challenges, it is crucial for consumers to actively seek out the best deals available to mitigate the impact of rising costs.


  1. Admiral profit up 4% despite insuring 380,000 fewer vehicles – The Guardian
  2. Big European insurers ‘underwrite 30% of US coal despite net zero pledges’ – The Guardian
  3. Direct Line to pay £30m to overcharged car and home insurance customers – The Guardian