Enclosed Car Transport - Ship Your Luxury Or Exotic Car

What is Enclosed Car Transport?

Enclosed Car Transport, which is a method of auto shipping also known as enclosed car shipping or covered transport, is the way to ship a car with extra protection.  Enclosed auto transport refers to the method of transporting a vehicle in an enclosed trailer or container, shielding it from external elements and potential hazards. It can be a single or multi-car trailer.

This mode of transportation is a preferred choice for high-value, classic, vintage, luxury, or exotic cars that require an additional layer of protection during transit.

Enclosed car transport offers superior protection and safety, and although it tends to be more expensive than open auto transport, its benefits often outweigh the additional costs for those who seek exceptional care for their vehicles.

These covered car transporters come in various sizes, from single-car trailers to multi-car trailers, offering flexibility in accommodating different types of vehicles. They feature heavy-duty doors and a fully enclosed, rigid exterior that protects the cars inside from weather, road debris, and other potential hazards.

They come in multi car carrier configurations as well as single car enclosed transport.

The interior often includes additional safety features like tie-downs and wheel straps, which ensure the vehicle remains securely in place during the auto shipping process.

Many enclosed car carriers are also equipped with hydraulic lift gates. This feature is incredibly beneficial for low-ground clearance vehicles, such as sports cars or luxury cars, which could be damaged while loading onto a typical ramp.

The lift gate allows the car to be raised or lowered horizontally, eliminating the need for steep inclines that can lead to scraping. This feature also reduces the risk of overall underside damage during the loading and unloading process.

Another considerable advantage of enclosed auto transport is the privacy it provides. Since the vehicles are entirely concealed within the trailer, it's nearly impossible for passersby to see what's inside with enclosed car transport services. This attribute is particularly useful for those transporting high-value vehicles, as enclosed car shipping mitigates the risk of theft or vandalism.

What is the Difference Between Open and Enclosed Car Shipping?

When comparing enclosed vs. open car transport, you will notice that with the open carrier, your car is moved on a trailer that will be exposed to the elements such as rain, dust, along with privy to other hazards such as road debris. But when you decide on enclosed carrier auto transport, the vehicle is kept away from the all those elements in a sealed container with other high end vehicles. 

This is a premium car shipping service for high value or sentimentally valuable vehicles designed to offer you complete peace of mind. With this type of auto transport you will have the highest level of protection.

As a result one of the obvious differences is the price over the standard open car shipping. Enclosed car shipping is 30-60% more than open trailers.

Although mostly designed for expensive automobiles, any vehicle of any value can be sent with an enclosed auto transport driver.  Having your car picked up with an enclosed car carrier can be for any reason. After all, it's your baby. You decide.

Is Enclosed Auto Transport Door to Door Transport?

Absolutely! Covered car transport offers door-to-door shipping, but it's important to note that this can depend on local regulations and the accessibility of the pickup and delivery locations. We do not use terminal to terminal covered car shipping.

Door-to-door car transport means the transport company will pick up the vehicle from a specified location, usually your home or place of business, and deliver it directly to the destination you've indicated. This is an incredibly convenient service as it minimizes the need for you to transport the vehicle to a central hub or pickup point.

However, some residential areas have restrictions on large commercial vehicles, making it difficult for large enclosed trailers to maneuver or legally enter. In these cases, the transport company usually arranges a meeting point that's as close as possible to the desired location, such as a large parking lot, where the vehicle can be safely loaded or unloaded.

It's always a good idea to discuss the specifics of pickup and delivery when you book the transport service to ensure the company can meet your expectations and comply with any local regulations.

When Select Enclosed Auto Transport?

When safeguarding your investment is the top priority, there's no doubt that having your vehicle completely protected with the security of enclosed transport services, which will surpass the safety of open auto. 

Rare or sensitive vehicle, high value car, prototype? Enclosed vehicle shipping is a great option for you. Regardless if your vehicle is of high value or sentimental value, classic or exotic, if you do not want it to be exposed to the elements and road grime as it would with an open carrier, then you want an enclosed carrier.

How Much Does Enclosed Auto Transport Cost?

To assist with helping you determine the car shipping cost, we have provided the following examples below. Whether it's classic car shipping or exotic car transport, most routes are based on the cost per mile, vehicle size,  and take in to account the extra protection.  To find out your cost for enclosed shipping instantly, try our calculator.

Sample Rates

Locations To/FromSample Price Per MileCostTravel Time
Decatur, IN to Gulf Breeze, FL$1.50 / mile$12852 Days
Cincinnati, OH to Dallas, TX$1.16 / mile$11002 Days
Miami Beach, FL to Beverly Hills, CA$0.73 /mile$19905-7 Days
Belton, MO to Tampa, FL$1.23 /mile$15603-4 Days
Los Angeles, CA to Dallas, TX$1.14 /mile$16503-4 Days
Beachwood, OH to Naples, FL$1.10 /mile$14003-4 Days
Coral Gables, FL to Newport Beach, CA$0.64 /mile$17505-7 Days

Why Does Enclosed Auto Transport Cost More?

A typical open trailer can carry up to nine or ten cars, while an enclosed trailer usually accommodates two to six vehicles, depending on the trailer's size and the vehicles' dimensions.

This reduced capacity means the costs of operation are spread across fewer vehicles, driving the price higher. The additional insurance and convenience of a sealed environment also makes this method of car transport more expensive.

However, for owners of high-value vehicles, this cost is often seen as a necessary expense to ensure the safety and security of their precious cargo.

Why Enclosed Car Shipping is The Safest Way to Go

Using enclosed car transport services is the safest option to move a vehicle. Car shipments will travel inside the walls of a truck that is shielded from the outside world. You are protected from all kinds of road debris, intense sun, rain, road dirt, and other highway crud, mud, and grime.

Your vehicle will be safeguarded against all the elements with enclosed transport.  It is the safest way for anyone looking for a secure car shipping service. Enclosed car shipping is what is recommended to make sure your vehicle arrives in perfect condition every time. 

How It Works : Enclosed Vehicle Transport

The process of using an enclosed car transport service is relatively straightforward. It involves a few important steps, each of which is designed to ensure the best care for your vehicle. Here's a comprehensive step by step blueprint to help you with the process:.

Request a Quote

Provide specific details about your enclosed vehicle transport (make, model, size, modifications), the pick-up and delivery locations, and your desired timeline on our calculator.

Book the Service:

Once you have determined enclosed auto transport meets your requirements and budget, book the service. You will provide details such as pick up location and contacts as well as the delivery location and contacts.

Prepare Your Vehicle

Before your vehicle is picked up, ensure it's ready for transport. Clean it thoroughly inside and out, which will make it easier to identify any scratches or damages later. Remove personal belongings, disable alarms, and ensure there's only a minimal amount of fuel in the tank (usually about a quarter tank). Document the current condition of your car with photos for your records before the enclosed transport carrier shows up.

Schedule Pickup and Delivery

Coordinate with the carrier for convenient pickup and delivery . Be aware that exact timing can be difficult for enclosed car trailers due to factors like weather and traffic, so there's usually a window of time for both pickup and delivery.

Inspect at Pickup

At pickup, the driver will usually perform an inspection of your vehicle, noting its condition on a bill of lading, which acts as a receipt and an inspection report. You should participate in this inspection, ensuring all pre-existing damage is documented before allowing the auto shipping service to pick up.

Receive the Vehicle

When your vehicle is delivered, conduct a final inspection. Use the photos you took and the bill of lading from the pickup to help identify any potential new damage. Although it is very rare with enclosed car haulers, if you find any, report it to the transport company immediately.


Depending on the type of shipping you need, payment can be taken before the pickup, or a deposit may be needed with the balance due at delivery. Your advisor will provide all these details for you.


Communication is key throughout this process. Don't hesitate to ask questions or voice concerns. This further helps ensure it can be a smooth, hassle-free experience.

When considering the enclosed car shipping companies to relocate your invaluable vehicle state to state or even across the country, you will want to know not only what to expect but be ready.

Benefits of Enclosed Auto Transport Services

Enclosed auto transport offers a host of advantages for those seeking to transport their vehicles safely and securely. These benefits contribute to its appeal, particularly for owners of high-value, classic, or luxury vehicles.

Peace of Mind

One of the most significant advantages of enclosed car transport is the peace of mind it offers. Knowing that your vehicle is entirely protected and secure during transit allows for a worry-free shipping experience. This is especially valuable if the vehicle holds sentimental value or is a valuable asset.

Unparalleled Protection

Enclosed car transport offers superior protection against environmental elements like harsh weather conditions, dust, and debris. The vehicle is fully enclosed within a secure container, mitigating the risk of scratches, dings, or other damage that could occur during open transport.

Low Ground Clearance Accommodation

Vehicles with low ground clearance, often seen in sports cars and luxury vehicles, require special care during loading and unloading. Enclosed trailers are often equipped with hydraulic lift gates that allow horizontal loading, minimizing the risk of damage to the vehicle's undercarriage.

Experienced Drivers

Trusted enclosed car transport companies that offer enclosed auto shipping will work with drivers with specific training and experience in handling high-value vehicles. We are no exception. These skilled professionals understand the importance of safe driving practices on and off car haulers. They are careful in loading and maneuvering, therefore your vehicle is in capable hands.

Higher Insurance Coverage

Given the higher value of vehicles typically transported in enclosed trailers, these transport services tend to provide more substantial insurance coverage compared to open transport services. This offers an extra layer of financial protection in the unlikely event of damage during transit.


Enclosed auto transport also provides privacy, keeping the vehicle out of sight during transport. This can be beneficial when transporting high-value vehicles that could attract unwanted attention.

By offering these benefits, enclosed auto transport goes beyond simple vehicle transportation, providing a premium service designed to ensure the h

Is Enclosed Car Transport The Right Choice?

The vehicle using these enclosed car shipping services does not need to have any more than sentimental value. So the answer is that although many choose enclosed shipping to protect a valuable vehicle like classic cars, an antique car, luxury car, exotic, sports car, or any other higher value car, the truth is it's a great choice for any vehicle.

You don't have to have a specific reason to use enclosed transport for that extra peace of mind you get over open transport trailers. Even inoperable (non-running) types can go enclosed!

Is Enclosed Auto Transport Worth the Price?

As a volume auto shipping company we do not profit more or benefit from you selecting an enclosed car hauler. However, we are car people and we love the car shipping industry. As car lovers we know you want reliable carriers. Our parking lot rivals the SEMA show. So we know a thing or two about vehicles. However, deciding on if enclosed transport is worth the price is up to you and you expectations.

With that said, you want to make sure that a single rock chip, scratch, stain, can blemish your won't damage your perfect paint during auto shipping. To limit the risk of not getting your vehicle in the exact condition you left it, it is may very well be worth the extra shipping cost.

National Express

At National Express, our top priority is providing exceptional, reliable, and transparent enclosed auto transport services that put our customers' needs at the forefront. We are dedicated to delivering a seamless, worry-free experience when it comes to transporting your valued vehicle.

No Upfront Payment

Unlike many other companies in the industry, we do not require you to pay upfront when booking enclosed auto transport or any of our other services for that matter. We believe in delivering our promised service before asking for payment. This principle not only instills trust but also assures you of our commitment to fulfill our responsibilities diligently.

Fully Insured Transport

At National Express, we understand that your vehicle is a significant investment, which is why we want you to know car haulers are fully insured during transit. Our enclosed auto transport service offers comprehensive insurance coverage, providing you with peace of mind knowing that your vehicle is financially protected against any potential damage from the moment it's picked up to the point it's delivered.

Excellent Customer Service

We pride ourselves on providing exceptional customer service and customer satisfaction. Our experienced and friendly team is always ready to assist you, answer your questions, and guide you through the process. We believe in open communication during the shipping process and are committed to keeping you informed at every stage of the enclosed shipping process.

No-cost Cancellation

We understand that plans can change. If you need to cancel your booking, we offer a no-cost cancellation policy for your covered car transport as long as we haven't assigned a truck to your enclosed vehicle transport order. This flexibility allows you to make decisions that best suit your needs without worrying about incurring unnecessary costs.

No Hidden Fees

We believe in transparency and honesty in our pricing. With National Express, what you see is what you get. We provide a comprehensive quote upfront, with no hidden fees or surprise charges. Our goal is to offer affordable, competitive prices for our superior enclosed auto transport service, ensuring value for money.

With National Express, shipping your vehicle via enclosed auto transport becomes a stress-free process, from start to finish. Our commitment to no upfront payment, full insurance, exceptional customer service, flexible cancellation, and transparent pricing sets us apart in the auto transport industry.

We’re not just about moving vehicles; we're about delivering a service that ensures security, satisfaction, and peace of mind. Trust National Express with your enclosed auto shipping needs and experience the difference we bring to the table.

How to Pick Between the Available Enclosed Auto Transport Companies

When considering using enclosed auto transport companies, it's essential to do thorough research and ensure the chosen company is reputable, experienced, and insured.

The auto transport industry is subject to regulations by the Department of Transport and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, so check to ensure your chosen company complies with all required rules and regulations. This is regardless of it you opt for covered auto transport services or not.

Insurance is another critical aspect when it comes to enclosed auto transport. Since this service is generally used for high-value vehicles, having adequate insurance coverage is a must when choosing a car shipping company.

A reputable auto transport company will offer sufficient insurance to cover any potential damage during transit. However, it's also wise to check with your personal auto insurance company to see if your policy covers your vehicle during transport.

Moreover, one should consider experience in handling similar vehicles when looking at enclosed car transport companies. Ask questions about their procedures for loading and unloading cars, as well as securing vehicles in the trailer.

How the car shipping broker answers questions says a lot about how they ship vehicles. The more transparent an enclosed auto transport company is about its process, the better you can assess their capability to handle your vehicle with the necessary care and professionalism.

Furthermore, customer reviews can provide insight into past experiences and the company's credibility. These reviews can highlight any potential issues, such as delays in delivery or communication problems. Checking reviews and ratings from multiple sources, including the Better Business Bureau, can help make a more informed decision.

infographic showing hard sided enclosed truck features

Hard Side Enclosed

The most common you may think of is the large and full-size tractor trailer with vehicles hidden inside. They look like a regular 18 wheeler but actually move very valuable cargo like fine luxury cars, exotic cars, classic cars, and expensive motorcycles.

These are also called “hard side” enclosed trucks. With this type of auto shipping you are actually referring to the type of trailer. This means the vehicles are sealed off from the world inside the trailer.

These trucks usually have two levels. Each level holds 3 vehicles. Most will have a lift-gate to safely elevate the vehicles onto a trailer that keeps them safe inside. The purpose of the lift-gate will be to prevent low clearance cars such as a race car or ultra exotic car transport like Lamborghini and Ferrari that can scrape as they are very low to the ground.

You’ll see a lot of high-end in these big trucks. This is known as “white glove service” as it’s expected that you can touch and drag a white cotton gloved finger across the vehicle and not pick up any dust at all from the trip. For the most expensive and rare cars this is the type of carrier that you must use to ensure the best outcome.

infographic showing soft enclosed trailer features

Soft-Side Enclosed

Soft-side enclosed trucks are the way in which most new luxury cars such as Lexus, Mercedes, and others head to sales lot. Although the tarps are tightly secured tarps as seen here, some road dust can make its way in at highway speeds therefore slightly less appealing to the most meticulous shipper.