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Cholamandalam MS Car Insurance Review: Great Online Policies

Cholamandalam MS General Insurance offers five different levels of car insurance, including three tiers of comprehensive insurance. Their policies are best suited for SUV drivers and they have a strong incurred claims ratio, but their claim settlement ratio is below average.

Cholamandalam MS Car Insurance Review: Great Online Policies

Cholamandalam MS General Insurance offers five different levels of car insurance, including three tiers of comprehensive insurance. Their policies are best suited for SUV drivers and they have a strong incurred claims ratio, but their claim settlement ratio is below average.

Editor's Rating


Good for

  • Consumers looking to purchase a policy online
  • SUV drivers

Bad for

  • Consumers seeking a wide range of discounts
  • Used car drivers

Cholamandalam MS General Insurance offers three levels of comprehensive car insurance: Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The Silver plan is the base package with the fewest number of included and option add-ons, while the Platinum plan has the widest range of coverage benefits.

All three plans cover damages from man-made and natural accidents, damages to third party individuals and properties, and come standard with personal accident coverage for the owner or driver of the insured car. For consumers in need of a lower level of coverage, Chola MS offers a third party only policy and a standalone own damage only policy.

Their cheapest plans are for SUVs, with annual premiums up to 14% below market average. Chola MS provides up to 19 add-ons for their Platinum policy, and five discounts that can be applied to any of the comprehensive bundles. The company's online purchasing process is smooth, modern and one of the best we've found online.

Summary of Cholamandalam MS Car Insurance
Choose from any of three different levels of comprehensive car insurance
Apply up to 5 discounts and 19 add-ons to a new comprehensive policy
Chola MS has an optimal 84% incurred claims ratio

Cholamandalam MS Comprehensive Car Insurance Plan Reviews

Cholamandalam MS's standard comprehensive car insurance policy is called the Silver Package. It comes with own damage coverage, third party coverage, roadside assistance and personal accident coverage for the owner or driver of the insured car. Silver policies are most affordable for SUVs, with annual premiums starting at Rs. 21,661, 14% cheaper than the national average for a new Maruti Vitara Brezza.

Bar graph showing premium prices for a new Maruti Vitara Brezza
Bar graph showing premium prices for a new Maruti Vitara Brezza

Chola MS also offers two enhanced comprehensive car insurance packages: the Gold Package and the Platinum Package. Both packages come with all the same policy inclusions as the Silver Package, but the Gold Package includes key and lock protection and depreciation coverage as well.

The Platinum package comes standard with engine and gearbox protection and consumables coverage on top of everything the Gold Plan includes (excluding key and lock protection, which is an optional add-on for Platinum). The annual premium costs increase by about 12% to the next-highest level of comprehensive coverage plan.

Chola MS offers up to 16 included and optional add-ons for their Silver Package, 17 for their Gold Package, and up to 19 for the Platinum Package. They are one of just two car insurers in our study to include roadside assistance as a standard benefit in their comprehensive plans, and the only insurer we studied to offer both a daily cash allowance and coverage of medical expenses as add-ons.

Add-On CoverageSilverGoldPlatinum
Starting Annual Cost₹20,291₹23,052₹25,612
Roadside AssistanceYesYesYes
Key & Lock ReplacementOptionalYesOptional
Depreciation CoverageNoYesYes
Engine & Gear Box ProtectionNoNoYes
Consumable Expense CoverageNoNoYes
Conveyance BenefitOptionalOptionalOptional
Invoice Price CoverageOptionalOptionalOptional
Personal Accident Coverage (Passenger)OptionalOptionalOptional
No Claims Bonus ProtectionOptionalOptionalOptional
Personal Baggage CoverageOptionalOptionalOptional
CNG Kit CoverageOptionalOptionalOptional
Road Tax CoverageOptionalOptionalOptional
Electrical Accessories CoverageOptionalOptionalOptional
Non-Electrical Accessories CoverageOptionalOptionalOptional
Small Repair ClaimsOptionalOptionalOptional
Daily Cash AllowanceOptionalOptionalOptional
EMI ProtectionOptionalOptionalOptional
Loss of License/Registration ReplacementOptionalOptionalOptional
Medical Expense CoverageOptionalOptionalOptional
Ambulance Expense CoverageNoNoNo
Hospital Cash AllowanceNoNoNo
Legal Liability For Paid Driver/WorkerNoNoNo

To help reduce annual premium costs, Chola MS offers a standard set of five potential discounts.

No Claims BonusYes
Auto Association MembershipYes
Anti-Theft DeviceYes
Vintage CarYes
Vehicle Modified for HandicappedYes
Voluntarily Increased DeductibleNo
Personal InformationNo
Specific LocationNo
Credit ScoreNo

All three of Chola MS's comprehensive plans have the same set of exclusions, which are also standard among the 16 car insurance companies in our study:

  • Wear and tear
  • Consequential losses or damages
  • Mechanical or electrical failures or breakdowns
  • Damage due to driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Damage due to driving without a license
  • Damage due to speeding, motor trade, commercial activity and staged accidents

Cholamandalam MS Third Party and Standalone Plan Review

Chola MS offers two alternatives to their comprehensive plans - a third party liability only policy and a standalone own damage policy - if you're seeking a cheaper policy, or only need a smaller scope of coverage than what's offered under the comprehensive plans.

Their third party policy includes coverage for damages to third party vehicles or properties and for injury or death of a third party due to an accident, but does not provide coverage for any damage to your car or yourself as the owner or driver. You are also unable to include any add-ons or apply any discounts to this plan.

The Indian government regulates third party coverage pricing and terms, including the policy offered by Chola MS, so all third party premiums from all insurers will cost the same annually.

Engine Capacity (cc)Annual Premium
< 1,000cc₹2,072
1,000cc - 1,500cc₹3,221

Chola MS's standalone own damage plan is the opposite of the third party plan: it covers damages to your insured car and injuries to yourself as the owner or driver, but does not provide coverage for damages to any third party property or individuals. Third party insurance is the minimum level of car insurance required by the Indian Government, so you must have an active third party policy to activate a standalone plan.

Consumers may purchase a new third party plan right on Chola MS's website, but you must work with a dedicated insurance agent to purchase a standalone plan, as the company will need proof of an active third party policy first.

Comparing Cholamandalam MS Against the Market

Chola MS's customers have awarded them with 4.3-of-5 stars on PolicyBazaar and a perfect 5-stars on InsuranceDekho, thanks to strong coverage - both standard and through add-ons - great online services and tools, and a knowledgeable team of agents. Some of the negative reviews mention the potential high cost of the comprehensive policies, especially for used cars and for the higher levels of comprehensive coverage, and the lack of tyre and tube coverage.

The company's 84% incurred claims rate is strong, and falls right into the optimal 75-90% range. Indian car insurers who have an ICR in this range have a healthy ability to settle claims against annual premium collection, and generally provide smooth claim settlement processes to their policyholders.

Car Insurance Companies ICR
Car Insurance Companies ICR

Chola MS's network of 7,100 cashless garages is the largest of any insurer we studied, and ensures that there will be a repair facility in your area in case of an accident.

Cholamandalam MSMarket Average
Market Share4.70%3.57%
Incurred Claims Ratio84%90%
Claim Settlement Rate88.4%94.3%
Cashless Garages7,1003,870
PolicyBazaar Star Ratings4.3 (73 reviews)4.2 (22 reviews)
InsuranceDekho Star Ratings5.0 (92 reviews)4.9 (167 reviews)

The company's claim settlement rate, however, is one of the five worst we analysed. At just 88.4%, policyholders should be aware that the claim settlement process with Chola MS may take longer than anticipated.

Online Car Insurance Buying Platform

Cholamandalam MS's step-by-step online buying process is modern, convenient, fast, and is one of the smoothest tools we studied.

There's no status bar to show you how far along you are in the quoting process, but Chola MS does provide the option to receive a copy of your quote via email or SMS. They also provide a detailed premium breakup, so you can see exactly how much each aspect of your policy costs annually.

The one drawback to Chola MS's online purchasing process is that sometimes the dropdown menus do not load any results for required fields. This can be a bit frustrating for consumers, but a simple reload of the page fixes the issue and allows you to enter the appropriate information.

The company's website, like its quoting tool, is also very modern and easy-to-navigate, and there are many useful tools for consumers to take advantage of. You can retrieve old quotes even after navigating away from the website, they provide a car insurance calculator so you can estimate your eventual annual costs, and there is a live support option available, so if you have any questions along the way, a dedicated agent will be able to assist you instantly.

Chola MS unfortunately does not provide any locator tools, such as a cashless garage locator or an office branch locator. You can obtain this information by working with an agent, but you will not be able to locate repair facilities or office branches instantly on their website.

Claims Settlement Process

In an attempt to improve their claim settlement rate, Cholamandalam MS now allows their policyholders to submit claims on their smartphone using the live video feature. They are one of just four insurers in our study to allow video claim submissions via smartphone, and the only company to offer live video submissions. Chola MS also will pick your car up from your home and bring it to the nearest in-network cashless garage for repairs.

The company does not guarantee any specific length of time for claims to be settled, but they do strive to offer quick and hassle-free claim processes.

Mike Wagenman

Mike Wagenman is a Senior Research Analyst at ValueChampion India, specializing in insurance. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication and Business from Rider University, and his prior work experience includes data, revenue, and business analysis in the international travel and technology markets. Mike has worked with clients around the world to help identify financial value and find the most optimal way to achieve success.