Black boxes could help cut insurance premiums for young drivers

BLACK box technology can help parents to keep premiums down when they are looking to insure their teenagers to drive.

Leeds-based company Towergate Insurance said installing telematics – also known as black box recorders – can make a significant difference to how much parents have to pay for insurance.

An EU directive introduced in December meant insurers could no longer differentiate premiums based on gender, ending the higher premiums paid by young male drivers based on the probability that they were more likely to be involved in an accident.

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According to research by ICM, 61 per cent of those surveyed believed the directive would increase the cost of driving for their children and only a quarter thought that insurance costs would remain the same.

The research found that a fifth of parents believed that it would mean their children would have to give up driving. However, 64 per cent of people were willing to use telematics technology to reduce costs.

With the cost of insurance for many young drivers becoming prohibitively expensive, Towergate believes that telematics insurance can help ensure that young people get a fairer premium based on how they drive, not on their gender.

The telematics solution, called iKube, uses GPS technology to identify if a car is in motion between the ‘risk hours’ of 11pm and 5am. Insurer research shows that young drivers are more at risk of being involved in a serious accident after 11pm.

Drivers who are a lower risk could be rewarded with a renewal premium to match – in some cases with discounts of up to 40 per cent.

iKube has been used by insurers since 2006 to help young people to get cheaper insurance cover.

John Simpson, managing director of Towergate Insurance in Leeds said, “Young people already find it a struggle to afford to get on the road, with insurance often costing more than their first car.

“iKube’s telematics technology could help young drivers secure a premium which is far less expensive than others on the market and provide greater road safety at night.”