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Car Repairs: Up, Down, Stop!

We’ve found three great UK stories for you that look at car repairs, car brakes, petrol prices and in-car technology. Enjoy!

Up

Remember earlier this year when petrol prices dipped under £1? It was a far cry from back in 2012, when the average price of a litre of petrol was £1.35 and diesel was £1.42. High fuel costs have had a considerable knock-on effect over the last few years, in that people have been forced to drop their annual mileage. Now, a drop in fuel prices means that mileage is back up, people have a bit more disposable income, and we can engage in a bit more consumer spending, which is beneficial to our economy.

Sadly, the same can’t be said of national average prices for car repairs, maintenance costs and insurance premiums. Over the last five years, national costs for car repairs have gone up by 10% on average, and 38% in the last decade. It’s not just car repairs that have risen, in fact, the price of car insurance has gone up, the price of new cars has gone up and the living wage has gone up.

If you want to keep up the quality of car repairs and maintain a consistency for your car in a world of ups and downs, call In Town Automotive on 01604 666700.

Down

It’s not all rising fees and costs, as this next story will explain. It is becoming widely known that cars with ‘smart’ features offer more safety, more security, automated parking, rear view mirror cameras, crash-avoidance systems and stop-start engines. These are just a few of the innovations will you find in a smart car, and the knock on effect they are having is that insurance companies are lowering their premiums for the owners.

As 75% of collisions occur at city driving speeds, of 20-30mph, autonomous braking systems and crash-avoidance technologies automatically detect when there will be a crash and are most effective at these speeds. Cars fitted with these systems had 38% fewer rear end crashes last year, and as a result, the insurance premium will be going down. Fewer car repairs will be needed to fix damaged vehicles, which could be an indicator as to why some garages have increased their prices. We are not one of them, we have consistent pricing for your benefit!

When you consider that a quarter of all claims are as a result of parking or low speed manoeuvring, it can be easily understood why cars with an automated parking system now demand a lower insurance premium.

Stop

The European body for testing car safety, NCAP, has announced that new car functions, such as ‘autonomous emergency braking’ and ‘pedestrian detection systems’ will be included in the next safety tests. This is great news for people who own and drive these cars, as a successful performance in testing means that the car’s safety rating will improve, leading to a drop in insurance premiums.

NCAP have already tested the Toyota Prius and remarkably awarded it a 5 star rating for its ‘Toyota Safety Sense’ technology. If the car senses a collision, it will automatically brake. The second car tested was the Suzuki Baleno, which was awarded a three star rating, although when fitted with the optional ‘Radar Brake Support’ system, it is awarded 4 stars!

The new testing system allows for cars to be given two separate ratings, as has been done with the Baleno above. One rating is given for the base model, and a separate rating is given for the higher spec version, although it does seem a little bit awful that cars should be sold without all of the safety features available.