Smart car?

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Smart car?

Postby roadz on Fri Apr 01, 2011 11:16 pm

Everybody has been moaning about how much car insurance has gone up recently and I didn't know how bad it wasn't until I started getting quotes on cars that I'm thinking of getting...

Initially I wanted a Merc C class coupe or an Audi A3 - insurance is just too much and I'm not willing to pay it. I've even got a quote on my old car just to see how much it was. Last year, I paid £850 with 2 years NCB. I've done a quote on the same car, now with 3 years NCB - £1200!

Anyway, I've now been thinking of getting a Smart car, as the insurance is much more reasonable (but still very high!), it's economical and is practical for me as I very rarely have more than one passenger.

Anyway, just wondering if any of you have ever owned or had any experience with Smart cars?
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Re: Smart car?

Postby Rilla on Sat Apr 02, 2011 1:04 am

Temper has/had one.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby Gym-pig on Sat Apr 02, 2011 10:49 am

I'd rather walk :D
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Re: Smart car?

Postby simon m on Sat Apr 02, 2011 4:43 pm

Funniest thing ever seeing Alex in his smart car going to the gym once, it was as if he was wearing the car!
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Re: Smart car?

Postby Alex on Sun Apr 03, 2011 9:39 am

One word for them - fragile.

I blew the inlet manifold to pieces with the first one and the Roadster I had as a temp direct replacement, which is meant to be bullet proof, was showing signs of giving up the ghost as well. They also use oil and have very little tollerance with oil level - a little high or low will land you in trouble and with a small capacity on the older models the margin for error is pretty small.

The newer ones use a 1 litre mitsubushi engine and I'm not convinced they're as economical as claimed either. I'd look into maybe Toyota Aygo or VW Fox if economy is key.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby ollie on Thu Apr 07, 2011 2:47 pm

Polo BlueMotion is another option.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby kp1512 on Thu Apr 07, 2011 3:53 pm

insurance is a joke! if ppl understood how they calculate premiums and rises - theyd be shocked.

you gota shop around mate - thats what I just did few months back
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Re: Smart car?

Postby simon m on Thu Apr 07, 2011 4:03 pm

kp1512 wrote:insurance is a joke! if ppl understood how they calculate premiums and rises - theyd be shocked.


In the last 10 years the insurance market has only had one year of profit on motor insurance due to fraud and huge personal injury claims and large legal costs from no win no fee lawyers.

It's a mugs game.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby Alex on Thu Apr 07, 2011 7:34 pm

It's discrimination on a grand scale.

If you've got no claims and no previous of making injury claims then your premium should be very low, otherwise you should be paying a high premium. Another case of the majority having to pay for a minority.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby roadz on Thu Apr 07, 2011 11:00 pm

Alex wrote:It's discrimination on a grand scale.

If you've got no claims and no previous of making injury claims then your premium should be very low, otherwise you should be paying a high premium. Another case of the majority having to pay for a minority.


This makes no sense IMO. Insurance is based on risk, that is the risk of your own insurer having to pay out. You can only make a claim for personal injury if the accident is not your fault and this means that your insurer will not be paying out, so I see no correlation between the amount of times a person has claimed for personal injury and the premium a person should pay.

But yes, insurance is has gone up so much recently and I'm looking at paying around 50% more than I did last year, despite having an extra years no claims.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby Alex on Thu Apr 07, 2011 11:27 pm

roadz wrote:
Alex wrote:It's discrimination on a grand scale.

If you've got no claims and no previous of making injury claims then your premium should be very low, otherwise you should be paying a high premium. Another case of the majority having to pay for a minority.


This makes no sense IMO. Insurance is based on risk, that is the risk of your own insurer having to pay out. You can only make a claim for personal injury if the accident is not your fault and this means that your insurer will not be paying out, so I see no correlation between the amount of times a person has claimed for personal injury and the premium a person should pay.

But yes, insurance is has gone up so much recently and I'm looking at paying around 50% more than I did last year, despite having an extra years no claims.


You're still costing the industry, as a whole, money though. By making claims of such nature you're costing another insurance company money and they will pass this on to their customers by increasing their premiums. Obviously there are genuine claims but I bet the vast majority are grossly exaggerated just so that the claims companies can made a tidy sum and create the illusion that they're doing us a favour when in reality the only benefit it to themselves and for the majority it pushes up our premiums.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby simon m on Fri Apr 08, 2011 7:43 am

Fraud puts £50 on each car policy alone, then you have the PI claims which are just so effing expensive i.e. you get whiplash and get paid say £4k, the No Win No Fee firm gets £10k+, the hire of anothe car costs a few £0000 as wekk, all adds up, plus the damage costs etc

Without no win, no fee, the costs of car insurance would come down laods.

Instead everyone should have a legal expenses policy and costs for legal should be capped which is something that is being brought in, but will fail as the costs should be set and they're not going to be
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Re: Smart car?

Postby ollie on Fri Apr 08, 2011 9:13 am

The contract hire companies need to be regulated better - they're the people that are doing well out of TP claims. The cost to the insurer of replacing a Range Rover for a few months can match the cost of the effing car!
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Re: Smart car?

Postby roadz on Fri Apr 08, 2011 11:08 am

Alex wrote:
roadz wrote:
Alex wrote:It's discrimination on a grand scale.

If you've got no claims and no previous of making injury claims then your premium should be very low, otherwise you should be paying a high premium. Another case of the majority having to pay for a minority.


This makes no sense IMO. Insurance is based on risk, that is the risk of your own insurer having to pay out. You can only make a claim for personal injury if the accident is not your fault and this means that your insurer will not be paying out, so I see no correlation between the amount of times a person has claimed for personal injury and the premium a person should pay.

But yes, insurance is has gone up so much recently and I'm looking at paying around 50% more than I did last year, despite having an extra years no claims.


You're still costing the industry, as a whole, money though. By making claims of such nature you're costing another insurance company money and they will pass this on to their customers by increasing their premiums. Obviously there are genuine claims but I bet the vast majority are grossly exaggerated just so that the claims companies can made a tidy sum and create the illusion that they're doing us a favour when in reality the only benefit it to themselves and for the majority it pushes up our premiums.


You are costing the industry as a whole money but going by this logic, you should also pay a higher premium if you have a non-fault accident and your car is written off, because this has also cost the industry money.

Ollie, whilst I agree with you about the credit hire companies needing more strict regulation, the insurers also don't help the situation by being so slow.

For example, I had my accident on 14/02/2011 and the third party's insurer admitted liability the following day. I was put into hire on the 15/02/2011 and the was an engineers report showing my vehicle was a write off by about the 19/02/2011. The third party's insurer didn't send me the cheque for my vehicle until 29/03/2011 - and I was in hire for all of the time, so around 7 weeks. Had the insurer been more efficient in dealing with the matter, they would've saved themselves say 5 weeks wirth of hire costs. Now I'm not sure what they charge for the vehicle but I think it's something around £40 per day, and that's a low estimate.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby Alex on Fri Apr 08, 2011 12:45 pm

roadz wrote:
You are costing the industry as a whole money but going by this logic, you should also pay a higher premium if you have a non-fault accident and your car is written off, because this has also cost the industry money.


Ollie, whilst I agree with you about the credit hire companies needing more strict regulation, the insurers also don't help the situation by being so slow.

For example, I had my accident on 14/02/2011 and the third party's insurer admitted liability the following day. I was put into hire on the 15/02/2011 and the was an engineers report showing my vehicle was a write off by about the 19/02/2011. The third party's insurer didn't send me the cheque for my vehicle until 29/03/2011 - and I was in hire for all of the time, so around 7 weeks. Had the insurer been more efficient in dealing with the matter, they would've saved themselves say 5 weeks wirth of hire costs. Now I'm not sure what they charge for the vehicle but I think it's something around £40 per day, and that's a low estimate.


I don't see a problem with this as it is what insurance was originally set up to cover in the first place. The whole claiming for any form of personal injury is a recent thing by comparison and to be honest should be a seperate entity away from car insurance. Most sensible individuals will have personal insurance policies in place to cover such eventualites which would force time off work so that bills can still be paid so I really can't see the necessity for the personal injury claims culture within the automotive industry.

Insurance companies are their worst enemy at time as was with my car 18 months ago when it should have been written off as the repair cost exceeded the value of the car and then I was given use of a hire car for 4 months as it took this long for body parts to be sourced from Italy so the other insurance company must have lost a fortune due to not checking the lead times on the parts.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby roadz on Fri Apr 08, 2011 2:50 pm

Insurers are definitely their own owrst enemy. Some insurers even have contracts with accident management companies and refer their policy holders who have non-fault accidents on to the accident managements, in exchange for a referral fee no doubt. In the short run they generate some revenue, in the long run they push claim prices up, which they need to cover and in the end we pay for it with higher premiums.

Not to mention the backhanders that go on. People who work for insurers and have access to their databases, passing on details to personal injury companies and earning per claim that goes ahead - at our place we had one guy who worked for one of the major inusurers and was passing details on to us for personal injury claims. I think he made something like £70k within about 6 months and then he got busted lol
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Re: Smart car?

Postby Alex on Fri Apr 08, 2011 3:22 pm

They're all sneaky bastards to be honest.

With my one last year I had an injury claim company ring up and ask if I wanted to make a claim against the women who hit my car. I quickly explained that I was in my house at the time and he should probably hang up and try doing some homework next time.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby roadz on Fri Apr 08, 2011 7:11 pm

What probably happened was somebody within the chain (whather that be the insurer, repairer, whatever) is taking details off the database and passing them on to a personal injury company - this person doesn't look at what's happened, just takes all of the non-faults and sends them through, hoping to make commission when people do make personal injury claims through the referral. It's so dodgy, but so common and an easy way to make a serious amount of money.
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Re: Smart car?

Postby Alex on Fri Apr 08, 2011 8:05 pm

You need to be very shrewd with car insurance now.

Check for legal representation for Full Comp policies now as they're not always included whereas in the past this was as standard.

Also if you add a more experienced named driver onto your policy it'll go down. I have my Dad on as a named driver and if I take him off my policy goes up! I can't see the logic in this as surely a named driver adds more risk but I guess they view it as the total driving time of the vehicle will be split between myself and a more experienced driver which decreases risk rather then just myself class as less experienced and so a higher risk. My view is that having a named driver will mean more milage and increased risk plus someone driving a car they're not used to on a daily basis again increasing risk.

The other one is going with No Claims Protection can also lower the policy as it gives the impression that you're more concerned about how you drive and that you'd rather not lose out on your no claims. Again you would have thought this would increase the cost.
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