Solus joins AI development process

Solus, the nationwide network of accident repair centres owned and operated by Aviva, is working with Thatcham Research and Emergent Network Intelligence (ENI) in developing artificial intelligence to speed the repair process.

The Intelligent Vehicle Inspection (IVI) software developed by ENI, a Verisk Analytics business, uses state-of-the-art image recognition and analytics data to identify when cars are write-offs or repairable.

Solus is collaborating with Thatcham Research and ENI to take the IVI software to the next level by using images to automatically produce accurate repair methods and parts lists to support car repairs. This will enable the bodyshop to get the repair process underway, reducing the impact on the customer. Parts can be ordered automatically, and the customer can be booked into a bodyshop knowing exactly how much work is required and the time it will take to complete the repair.

Simon Smith, Solus operations director, said, ‘This is a very exciting development in the accident repair process. Decisions can be made quickly about whether a vehicle is repairable. And furthermore, we can diagnose what needs to be done to repair the vehicle and match this to what really matters to our customers.’

The process will provide clarity on the length of time the customer will be without their vehicle and when it will be returned to them. In addition, the developments are continuing as Solus looks to use this technology in the repair process.

Smith added, ‘These are still early days, and we’re pushing the limits of what this type of technology can do. The initial results are promising, and we’re working with Thatcham and ENI to refine and improve the output further.’

ENI has been developing its own AI capabilities for several years. Chris Campbell, managing director at ENI said, ‘Although AI and machine learning have been around for a while, their applications have not been that prevalent within the body repair sector. We’re all excited about the significant benefits IVI will bring to Solus and, more importantly, to its customers.’