Cheap black box car insurance woos young drivers

black boxBlack box in-car technology is gaining in popularity and nearly a fifth of all drivers are considering a switch when their car insurance comes up for renewal.

Only 4% of drivers have the technology fitted, but the lure of cheaper car insurance for safe drivers is proving irresistible to many. The findings come from an independent survey by research firm Consumer Intelligence.

The firm claims insurers are ready to take black box technology mainstream and drivers are open to having their motoring habits monitored.

The technology works by fitting a small unit or smartphone to the car linked online to the insurer.

The insurer is fed information about the speed, location, mileage and other vehicle data which is then processed to score the driver’s ability and risk of making a claim.

Insurance firms argue that pricing insurance is tailored to the driver, setting individual premiums rather than blanket prices, which leads to cheap car insurance.

The study disclosed that 80% of drivers are aware of the technology, although more than half (57%) believe the product is targeted only at younger drivers.

Ian Hughes, CEO of Consumer Intelligence said: “With nearly one in five drivers saying they would consider a black box policy at their next renewal date it is clear that the market is changing.

“There is of course a difference between considering and actually buying and the numbers who have black box policies remain relatively low. However the launch of new products for the market and increasing acceptance of the benefits of black box policies will mean the sector should grow.”

Hughes explained drivers are wary of pricing before buying into black box car insurance.

“Half say they would consider a policy which was attractively priced to reflect annual mileage with the possibility of a refund if their annual mileage was less than anticipated,” he said.

“That compares to 47% for those who would consider a policy priced to reflect driving style with safe drivers receiving lower premiums and price rises being imposed if they don’t drive safely. Perhaps unsurprisingly, 84% would be interested if the black box was fitted free and motor premiums reduced for careful driving.”

Read more about telematics and black box insurance

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