Autonomous vehicles to impact insurance

Research has found that 380 million vehicles worldwide will have some form of autonomy in 14 years time, which will have an impact on the car insurance market.

In the 2016 edition of the Usage-Based Insurance (UBI) study, consultancy firm PTOLEMUS made the forecast that 380 million semi, highly or fully autonomous vehicles (AVs) will be on the road by 2030.

The rise is also forecast to by the report to have some benefits. In the decade preceding 2030, the penetration of active safety / ADAS functions and autonomous vehicles will reduce the number of accidents by more than 30%, which will cause insurance premiums to fall by up to 40%.

A detailed, bottom-up analysis of the causes of road accidents was conducted, which also looked to establish how ADAS functions are likely to prevent them. It also evaluated the progression of active safety features such as AEBS (Advanced Emergency Braking Assistance) and their impact on avoidable claims losses in each market.

The results show that where AV penetration is highest, such as Germany, the auto insurance market will decrease by 40% between 2020 and 2030.

PTOLEMUS managing director Frederic Bruneteau said, ‘The emergence of autonomous vehicles may appear as a remote risk today. However, this is a collision insurance companies must face and the magnitude of its impact is extremely high.’

The report’s findings on the impact of AVs on insurance are part of a wider set of trends affecting the auto insurance sector including UBI, the end of statistical models, OEM-insurance integration and smartphone insurance.