“Britain’s largest auto insurance company Direct Line is testing out the hypothesis by enticing Tesla owners to turn on their Autopilot with a 5% discount, Reuters reports. The company intends to evaluate whether Autopilot will indeed lower accident rates and thereby justify lower premiums. Premiums will still vary based on the driver’s history, but according to a user in the Tesla Motor Club forum, drivers receive the discount once they tell Direct Line they have Autopilot through the insurer’s Tesla-specific channel.
In March, Root, an Ohio-based insurance startup, became the first insurer to offer discounts to customers using Tesla’s Autopilot. The company, which uses an app to evaluate your safety during a test drive, said it could detect how often a driver used Autosteer, a feature of Autopilot, and lower premiums accordingly, but some critics have been skeptical of whether the app can tell the difference between Autosteer and careful driving. Root now offers the promotion across nine US states.”
“At present the driver is firmly in charge so it’s just like insuring other cars,” Dan Freedman, the company’s head of motor development, told Reuters. But Direct Line will also have to prepare for instances when that is no longer the case, given that people have been prone to rely on Autopilot outside of its recommended uses. Last year, for example, a Tesla driver let it take over for over 20 miles to rush to the hospital during a lethal pulmonary embolism.”