Safe drivers typically save money on car insurance, but a person’s driving record isn’t that only thing that impacts insurance rates. The car you drive can also make a big difference. If you buy a car with modern safety features designed to prevent crashes, you might be wondering whether you’ll get a discount. Here’s what you can expect.
Why Your Car Impacts Your Rates
Some cars are more expensive to ensure than others. There are many reasons for this.
- Some cars are more likely to be stolen than others. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, the most stolen car in the nation, as of 2018, is the Honda Civic.
- Some cars have a better safety record than others. Each year, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) maintains a list of its top safety picks.
- Some cars are more expensive to repair than others. If you get into a crash, the repair costs can have a major impact on the size of the claim.
Modern Safety Features
Although the car you drive has always had an impact on safety, modern safety features have made the connection even stronger.
Many new cars come with accident avoidance systems designed to prevent accidents from ever happening. There are many different systems on the market today, but here are a few of the most promising:
- Automatic Emergency Braking systems sense an imminent collision and initiate automatic braking when needed.
- Back-up Cameras help drivers see what’s behind them with the use of rear-view cameras.
- Blind-Spot Warning systems give the driver a warning when there’s another vehicle in the car’s blind spot.
- Lane-Keeping Assist systems provide steering input to help drivers stay in their lane, while Lane-Departure Warning systems provide alerts when drivers start to steer out of the lane.
The Problems with Modern Safety Features
Although modern accident avoidance systems are very impressive, they are not foolproof.
For one thing, research has found that some drivers tend to rely on safety features more than they should. These are not fully self-driving cars, and drivers need to remain alert at all times.
Nevertheless, the features can help – as long as drivers keep them on. Unfortunately, drivers often turn off important safety features because they get annoyed by the alerts. According to Cars.com, a study from IIHS found that drivers turn off lane departure alert systems about half of the time, while a new J.D. Power’s study finds that about one-quarter of drivers find various alerts to be annoying, and about half of those drivers disable the alerts.
Modern safety features can help prevent crashes, but they don’t prevent all crashes, especially when people misuse them. And when accidents do occur, cars with modern safety features can be much more expensive to repair.
Discounts for Safety Features
Many consumers want a discount for modern safety features. Insurance companies, on the other hand, have been hesitant to provide discounts for new technology.
According to the Insurance Journal, insurers says they don’t have enough data to determine what discounts are appropriate. However, work is being done on this front, and Swiss Re is developing a global ADAS risk score that could help auto insurers determine the right discounts.
In the meantime, drivers who want to save money on car insurance should also keep in mind that avoiding crashes is the best way to keep insurance costs down. If you have a car with accident avoidance technology, keep these systems on while continuing to remain alert on the road. This will help you avoid both accidents and high rates.
Need an auto insurance quote for your car? Jupiter Auto can help. Get a quote here.