Norwich Union road-tests revolutionary new motor insurance

Article date: 18 August 2004

Motor insurance is set for a shake up with Norwich Union’spilot scheme of "Pay As You Drive"™ insurance.

Hundreds of motorists are now road-testing revolutionarytechnology that could mean insurance premiums in the future arecalculated on how often, where and when people drive theircars.

For the first time motorists will begin to understand whatdrives their premiums, ultimately allowing them to have greatercontrol and to adjust their driving patterns to reduce theirmotoring costs.

"Black box" telematics devices are currently being fitted into5,000 Norwich Union customer cars across the UK. The cars involvedin the pilot scheme belong to a wide range of motorists - from lowmileage users to long distance drivers, those who live in ruralareas to town dwellers.

The black box is smaller in size than a DVD case and isinstalled either in the boot or passenger area of acustomer’s car. The box records real-time vehicle usage andsends the data to Norwich Union securely using similar technologyto that used by mobile phones.

The pilot will last for up to two years and once the findingsare evaluated, Norwich Union will confirm whether "Pay As YouDrive"™ (PAYD) insurance will become available to allcustomers.

One of the first volunteers to have her car fitted with a "PayAs You Drive"™ insurance system is Linda Jones, fromChichester.

She said: "The PAYD pilot grabbed my attention as it seemed amuch fairer way of charging for car insurance. It doesn’tpenalise me for how other motorists drive and it’s also moretransparent. I like the fact that in time I’ll receive amonthly bill, similar to my phone bill showing exactly how mypremium has been calculated."

The revolutionary technology adapted for the "Pay As YouDrive"™ insurance scheme is ideal for the safety andsecurity-conscious motorist. Norwich Union’s telematicsdevice has the ability to locate a vehicle in the event of theftand in future will provide instant notification of accidents to theinsurer. Future enhancements such as panic buttons and real-timeroute planning could also feature in the longer term.

Robert Ledger, programme director for the "Pay As YouDrive"™ insurance scheme said: "After months of carefulplanning it’s great to see drivers on the road with‘Pay As You Drive’™ insurance technology. Webelieve this initiative is a major breakthrough in the developmentof more tailored motor insurance premiums enabling us to treat alldrivers as individuals. And we’re confident our customerswill fully appreciate the benefits too.

"The interest in the pilot scheme has been phenomenal. We couldhave filled the pilot twice over with the amount of requestswe’ve had from interested motorists, not just within the UKbut from drivers around the world.

"As a market leader, Norwich Union is always looking to developnew opportunities to deliver greater value and choice to ourcustomers and we are confident ‘Pay As YouDrive’™ insurance is the future."

Norwich Union – the UK’s largest insurer – hasan exclusive agreement with US insurer Progressive to pioneer "PayAs You Drive"™ insurance in the UK and Europe usingtelematics technology.

Although places on the pilot have already been filled, motoristswho would like to find out more about the scheme and any futureplans to bring the product to the market, can contact the "Pay AsYou Drive"™ insurance team at payasyoudrive@norwich-union.co.uk.

-ends-

Media contacts:
Further information and PAYDimagery is available by calling:
Charlotte Speedy, Matt Buchanan or Charlotte Ruddlesdin at QBO BellPottinger on 020 7861 2424 or 07976 251 409

Jenny Chapman at Norwich Union Press Office on 01603 682 264 or07775 822642

Notes to editors:

  • Norwich Union is the UK’s largest insurer with a marketshare of around 14 per cent
  • With a focus on insurance for individuals and smallbusinesses, Norwich Union insures:
    - one in five households
    - one in seven motor vehicles
    - more than 800,000 businesses
  • Norwich Union products are available through a variety ofdistribution channels including brokers, corporate partners suchas banks and building societies and Norwich Union Direct
  • Norwich Union’s news releases and a selection of imagesare available from Aviva’s internet press centre at www.aviva.com/media
  • An ISDN facility is available for studio quality broadcast.Call the press office on 08703 66 68 68
  • For all life & pensions media enquiries call 08703 66 6873
  • For all other media enquiries call 08703 66 68 68.

Back to top