Toyota and Ford join usage-based car insurance programs

Posted: 4 March 2020 5:47 pm

Nationwide and Liberty Mutual have teamed up with the car brands to offer driver discounts of up to 40%.

Usage-based insurance is trending in 2020, with Nationwide and Liberty Mutual joining a string of insurers offering cheaper car insurance for safe and infrequent drivers.

Toyota drivers in Arizona, Ohio and Texas who own a connected car can now purchase a Toyota Insurance Management Solutions (TIMS) BrightDrive policy. When they opt in, they’re enrolled in Nationwide’s SmartRide, a usage-based program that syncs up with the telematics devices in newer Toyota models to collect data about driver behavior.

It tracks distance driven, hard braking and accelerating, idle time and night driving, and works with 2018 to 2020 models. Nationwide gives all policyholders a 10 percent discount at sign-up — and then gives them the opportunity to earn a discount of up to 40 percent over the next 90 days.

It’s a similar story with Liberty Mutual, which has joined forces with Ford to offer a pay-as-you-go policy in five states: Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Maine and West Virginia. The RightTrack program accesses FordPass Connect, a built-in telematics device in 2020 models. It then pulls information about miles driven, rapid acceleration, hard braking and the time of day, according to Glenn Greenberg, media relations director at Liberty Mutual.

Ford drivers will receive an initial discount of 5 to 10 percent when they sign up for RightTrack, and then be eligible for a further discount of up to 30 percent after 90 days of driving.

To get coverage, drivers can log into their respective apps and follow the prompts to buy a policy.

How these pay-as-you-go policies benefit drivers

Both the Nationwide and Liberty Mutual programs give drivers access to their own telematics data — without having to install a device in their car. They can then use this information to score a lower rate on their car insurance based on how they drive.

“With RightTrack, Liberty Mutual can streamline the insurance evaluation process, making it easier for customers to save on their auto insurance with customized discounts,” Greenberg told Finder.

“[The] TIMS BrightDrive experience enables Toyota owners to seamlessly participate in usage based insurance (UBI) without any aftermarket plug-in devices or insurance company mobile apps,” TIMS Vice President Will Nicklas told Finder.

“UBI offers Toyota owners initial savings on their insurance and the ability to increase their savings with safe driving,” Nicklas said.

The programs also aim to make the claims process easier, by allowing drivers to access accident forgiveness, take their cars to certified collision centers and get repairs using original parts.

How the two usage-based programs compare to others on the market

Pay-as-you-go policies are designed to put drivers back in the driver’s seat and help them reduce their premiums.

There are insurers that exclusively issue usage-based insurance, but most major carriers across the US now offer telematics discounts, including State Farm and GEICO.

With Nationwide’s and Liberty Mutual’s programs, safe drivers can qualify for discounts of between 30 and 40%– a more generous discount than most competitors. The discounts also apply at the three-month policy renewal, while some other programs require drivers to wait six months.

But specialized insurers like Metromile or Root allow drivers to start saving as soon as their coverage goes into effect. By choosing one of those providers, you may be able to save more in premiums over the course of your policy.

Picture source: Toyota

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