Could Intelligent Speed Adaptation make car insurance cheaper?

With speeding rumoured to be on the way out, the local fuzz filled their boots while they could
"Forcing consumers to adopt this technology sounds like a recipe for discord further down the line" Scott Kelly,
  • | by Kristian Dando

Speeding can make your car insurance more expensive. Just ask anyone who’s had to make a claim after a speed-induced bump, or who's had to notify an insurer of penalty points they’ve picked up after being zapped by a lurking roadside van.

But new plans from the European Commission could make speeding a thing of the past.

The executive body of the European Union is mulling laws which would see new and existing cars fitted with technology to prevent driving above the given speed limit of a road.

How? Through Intelligent Speed Adaptation (ISA) systems, which work using similar GPS technology to that used for telematics car insurance policies.

Unsurprisingly, not everyone thinks having ‘Big Brother’ riding shotgun at all times is a good idea.

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin is rumoured to have ‘erupted’ when he learned of the proposals, and has told officials that he’ll block the move. Getting drivers onside would also prove tricky.

Scott Kelly, car insurance expert at, said “Whether you or not you think that governments should try and control people's driving behaviour, one thing we can probably agree on is that quicker emergency response times and reduced speeds on our roads will lead to less accidents and claims costs. Crash data will help apportion blame more fairly and accurately than at present.

“But as we seek to use technology to improve our lives, we just need to be careful not to over-egg the benefits of these advancements when we consider the likely loss of privacy that they naturally bring about. Forcing consumers to adopt this technology sounds like a recipe for discord further down the line.”

Meanwhile the Institute of Advanced Motorists doesn’t believe that ISA should be adopted - at least, not yet.

“Full-control ISA needs basic safeguards built in from the outset, such as 100% reliability of equipment and speed limit mapping, and failsafe mechanisms for when they go wrong,” states the organisation.

It also points out that ISA may prevent drivers from accelerating away from trouble, and that well-trained drivers would never need such a system - even though new drivers or those with a poor crash record may benefit.

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