According to PwC UK predictions, changing regulations, plus the ongoing pandemic could impact general insurance costs, including motor insurance. With a rising cost of new car parts, will consumers be looking for a more affordable option when it comes to vehicle repair?
Reforms to reduce the number and cost of road traffic accident whiplash claims are expected in May 2021. However, the average cost of vehicle repairs is likely to continue to increase by 7% – 10%, as car manufacturers increase the cost of car parts to make up for profits lost through the reduction in new car sales.
With the likely increase in vehicle repair costs due to these rising prices of new car parts, is there a way for the vehicle recycling industry to utilise their green parts stock to benefit customers looking to keep the cost of repairing their vehicle down?
We asked some vehicle recycling companies for their thoughts.
Marc Trent, Managing Director at Charles Trent Limited, said:
“Using green/ recycled parts in the repair chain has been talked about for many years. With rising prices well beyond inflation & a supply chain that has also been negatively affected by the pandemic now is the time for insurers to embrace the use of green/ recycled parts. This will help reduce total losses, reduce costs, reduce CO2, assist in keeping premiums down & in some cases save the customer.”
Allen Prebble, Managing Director at Silverlake Automotive Recycling, said:
“Our work with motor insurers, which has increased by 15% year-on-year over the last 15 years, confirms the findings in the recent PwC UK report that controlling rising motor claims costs remains an ongoing priority. The escalating price of new parts is inflating repair costs and according to the report, this looks set to continue.
As a VRA Certified supplier, audited against the UK Standard for ‘Reclaimed Parts from End-Of-Life Vehicles’, Silverlake supports insurers through the supply of quality graded, warranty assured reclaimed OEM parts, which offer significant savings on new parts. We do this via our membership of the e2e Total Loss Vehicle Management network and our partnership with the Green Parts Specialist.
Demand continues to grow as insurers seek ways to reduce claims costs and experience delays in new parts supply due to Covid and the Brexit Trade Co-operation Agreement. We have responded by expanding our warehousing and increasing our stocks of panels in storage by 80% enabling us to house over 10,000 panels at any one time; our people are integral to our service promise and we have boosted the skills within our in-house team, embedding stringent quality controls and recruited from the bodyshop and accident repair sectors to help shape our services with end-user knowledge; we have invested in a new workshop and facilities for the safe recycling of electric and hybrid vehicles, preparing for the increase in numbers as we move towards 2030 and the government ban on the manufacture of new fossil fuel vehicles.
To make the use of reclaimed parts commonplace, as it is in other countries, we would like to see the introduction of ‘green motor insurance policies’ as standard, giving the consumer the choice to purchase a policy that uses reclaimed parts in its repair process for a competitively priced premium. Then together, the insurance industry and the salvage and recycling industry can levy the public and government on reclaimed parts and their value, both commercially and environmentally.”
Mia Constable, Head of Business Development at e2e Total Loss Vehicle Management said:
“The PwC UK prediction that the average cost of vehicle repairs is likely to continue to increase by 7% – 10% unfortunately, comes as no surprise. There’s lots of noise in the market about reclaimed parts and we are excited to be talking to a number of insurers who are exploring salvage and reclaimed parts as one proposition. This delivers a streamlined process with two outcomes: the opportunity to reduce the number of total loss cases by lowering repair costs or, receiving strong salvage returns on those vehicles that are categorised not fit for repair.
Our network members are leading the market in the provision of quality graded, warranty assured reclaimed parts, which offer substantive savings c60%+ on manufacturer retail prices. Demand is growing and the VRA Certification Scheme is further building insurer confidence in the reliability of reclaimed parts. Many of our members have increased their reclaimed parts stock and invested in additional warehousing, IT infrastructure and delivery vehicles to increase opportunities to fulfil insurer requirements, provide seamless ordering facilities and guarantee rapid delivery, with 100% of shelf parts delivered next day.
There are other ways too that e2e works with insurers to help manage both their claims spend and their operational cost – market competitive salvage returns; recovery & storage cost negotiation; management of finance settlement cases to expedite total loss vehicle clearance; and engineering support to name a few. We’re frequently told by clients how much salvage resource they don’t have in their business, with the associated overheads, because they can trust us to take care of it.”
Tom Rumboll, CEO at SYNETIQ, said:
“SYNETIQ’s green parts supply function is well prepared for an increase in demand, following continued investment in this area over the last two years. Our industry is well-versed on the huge financial savings available through the effective use of green parts – but for us, there are other necessary benefits to consider. SYNETIQ is working with its insurance clients to inform policyholders about the environmental benefits of green parts, with available CO2 savings at the forefront of this. The cost savings and environmental benefits go hand in hand, creating a real ‘win-win’ situation.”
Ian Hill, MD of Hills Salvage and Recycling Ltd (Green Parts Specialists,) said:
“With a lower rate of accidents compounded by an increase in manufacturer parts prices, its only natural for repairers and insurers to look for sustainable means to maintain profitability in the supply chain. Green parts offer just that.
Lower accident rates are great for insurers, but the aggregator markets are likely to become ever more competitive, with consumers looking for the best deal possible. Reducing average repair costs through the adaptation of green parts will ensure insurers remain competitive whilst meeting their obligations to become more environmentally responsible, and consumers are demanding it.”