Auto Braking Cars and Their Effect on Car Insurance
Cars fitted with Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) will reduce car insurance prices for their owners according to the Association of British Insurers.
Vehicles that feature Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) will be the subject of a lower motor insurance group rating and therefore lower insurance premiums from British insurance providers. The car safety technology that is a feature on many new vehicles uses sensors located at the front of the car to identify a potential collision and automatically apply the brakes to avoid a crash. This system can already be found on some Fords, Volvos and Volkswagens and it is likely to be a safety feature on more modern car marques in the future.
Thatcham, the organisation that provides accident risk assessment studies in the UK and provides research into motor insurance repairs, has gathered and analysed data to demonstrate to the UK insurance industry that AEB could reduce accidents. Accident-related injuries such as whiplash, which have been partially responsible for pushing up motor insurance prices, could be significantly lowered, allowing insurance companies to pass on savings to their policyholders.
Studies in the United States conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety looked at the Volvo XC60, which features AEB technology, and monitored its claims history. It was found that drivers of the XC60 were 25% less likely to make a claim compared to any other 4x4 vehicle in its class. Overall this proved that many of the lower speed front–to–rear traffic shunts were being prevented.
The AEB system uses a combination of laser, radar and camera sensors to monitor the road ahead whilst travelling. If it detects a potential hazard it will initially warn the driver and following this it will then independently apply full brake pressure to avoid the incident or to minimise the severity of the impact. The studies illustrate that a potential 2,700 pedestrian casualties and 160,000 whiplash injuries could be avoided providing a significant positive effect to road safety and motor insurance costs.
Thatcham’s Chief Executive, Peter Shaw, commented: “This is a fantastic example of the insurance industry not only embracing and encouraging important new safety technology, but also looking after their policyholders. Aside from any financial advantage that specifying AEB could bring, motorists will certainly benefit from the peace of mind that comes with what Thatcham have proven to be a significant safety benefit.”
Andrew Goulborn, Commercial Director of Tiger.co.uk, said: “Any additional vehicle safety innovations that can be introduced will give motorists greater safety on the roads as well as a greater chance of benefitting from cheap car insurance. Even those that don’t have the technology could still save money as the entire insurance industry should be reducing spend on payouts for repairs and injury claims.”