Expert’s Advice for Your Better Car
A new state regulation requiring Anti-theft devices in certain luxury cars is driving some motorists crazy. Consumers and some insurance industry officials are expressing confusion over the new regulation, which requires that the device be installed in hundreds of car models to avoid a 50 percent surcharge on the comprehensive portion of an insurance policy. A small percentage thinks they need a device when they really don’t, and there is some confusion about the years of the cars that are affected.
- The regulation affects about 5 percent of all cars on the road, according to figures supplied by the Registry of Motor Vehicles. We’re pricing insurance based on the risk involved. People with high-risk cars who don’t take a precaution…are costing the system added risk. Installing an anti-theft device for an expensive car is probably a good investment regardless of this regulation.
- Three sources of data were used to determine which cars went on the list. For high-theft figures, the division relied on figures supplied by the National Highway Safety Council. The national list was then compared with average base sticker prices by model. The state’s classification of models, comparing cost and replacement value, was also referenced. There had to be above-average theft and above-average cost.
Growth Spurt of High – Tech Product
Despite the confusion, the regulation has made business boom among companies that install anti-theft devices. “We are selling more of the expensive systems,” said vice president of Safe and Sound automotive electronics in Watertown. Some higher-end remote alarm systems can also provide luxury features, such as power door lock control using a transmitter, a remote car starter, and best radar detector.
Some consumers come in not sure whether they need to purchase a system, Gailey said, and he looks up the car’s make and model on a list published by The Boston Globe. Copies of the list have been mailed to all agent-broker associations, he said, advising people to call their insurance companies.
The anti-theft devices have been shown to be effective. Thieves probably skip over the cars that have them. With an anti-theft device, rates are automatically reduced in the theft-related portion of a policy, Gailey said. But consumers can’t hope for significant changes in premiums since the major factor in setting rates is the number of small accidents. He also pointed out that while theft is still an important variable, “Boston is no longer the auto-theft capital” of the country.
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Source: Review Updater