At least one insurance company says it plans to raise the premiums for Tesla owners. The company claims that owners of the Model X and Model S tend to make claims more often and said that the costs to fix the Tesla vehicles are higher compared to those of other comparable vehicles. However, the automaker refutes the firm’s claim and says that the analysis is flawed.
AAA is hiking insurance rates for Tesla owners
The American Automobile Association said that premiums to insure Tesla EVs could increase by up to 30%, reports Automotive News. The firm used data from various sources, including the non-profit Highway Loss Data Institute.
The institute claims that there are 46% more insurance claims filed for Tesla’s Model S than there are for the segment average. It also said that repairs for the Model S tend to cost more than double the average cost. The HLDI also claims that there are 41% more claims for the Model X and that repair costs tend to be 89% higher more than the average cost for vehicles in the segment.
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A spokesman for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the parent organization of the HLDI, summed up the issue for Automotive News: “Teslas get into a lot of crashes and are costly to repair afterward.”
Other insurance firms may raise rates for Tesla vehicles
AAA’s chief actuary told Automotive News that they initially noticed similar anomalies in their own data, and that’s when they began looking at data from other sources. Their main source was the HLDI as the sought to confirm their own analysis. They decided to raise their rates for Tesla vehicles after finding in data from other sources the same patterns they had found in their own data.
State Farm, Geico and other major insurance companies would not reveal whether or not they would be raising rates for Tesla owners, although they did say that data on claims is a key factor when it comes to setting premiums for vehicles
Tesla: analysis is “severely flawed”
The HLDI groups the Model S with other large luxury vehicles, which includes the Audi A6, BMW 5-Series, Mercedes-Benz E-Class and the Volvo XC70. The vehicle class is defined as cars that measure between 90 and 110 cubic feet and weigh 3,500 to 4,500 pounds.
In a statement set to Automotive News, Tesla called AAA’s analysis “severely flawed” and “not reflective of reality.” The company stated that there were several issues with it, one of which was that the analysis compared the Model S and Model X to vehicles “that are not remotely peers, including even a Volvo station wagon.” Tesla also said that if its vehicles were grouped with the correct set of competing vehicles, the crash data wouldn’t stand out in a negative light.
The company said that it’s “false and misleading” to compare the Model S and Model X against the vehicles it is grouped with because of their high rates of acceleration. It also stated that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration evaluated the Model S and found it to have the lowest likelihood of injuries for its passengers.
Tesla also said that it has been working with insurance companies through its Insure My Tesla program, which has resulted in price reductions for owners of its vehicles rather than increases. The automaker said the NHTSA found its Autopilot autonomous driving system to reduce crash rates by 40%. It also said that “leading insurers” “appreciate” Autopilot’s safety benefits.