Why Safer Cars Don’t Lead to Cheaper Car Insurance – Yet
Many new model cars are equipped with safety features such as advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) that preemptively hit the brakes before a collision, avoid obstacles or signal drivers about hazards in their blind spots. However, using ADAS technology does not necessarily result in lower premiums. This is because when crashes do occur, repairs are more expensive due to the replacement cost of the sophisticated technology in the systems.
Scott Wallisch, an auto pricing director with American Family Insurance, said that while adaptive headlights improve visibility, replacing them can run as much as $2,000, compared with traditional headlights, at about $200. Michael Klein, president of personal insurance at Travelers, said that savings from ADAS have not been substantial enough so far to offset the increased cost of repairs, but emphasizes that consumers should always be encouraged to buy safer vehicles.