Insurance Data Show Hybrids Get More Tickets


Here’s something to think about: recent research conducted by insurance experts have revealed that hybrid car owners are more likely to get traffic tickets than owners of regular cars. They are also more expensive to repair.

Insurance Data Show Hybrids Get More TicketsThe research shows that on average, hybrid drivers garner an average of 0.38 moving violations for every 100,000 miles driven. Regular vehicles get an average of only 0.25.

Insurance experts say that because of hybrid cars’ great fuel economy, more drivers go on pleasure trips or trips not related to their occupation. On average, most hybrid owners drive some 10,500 miles per year when not commuting to their work. This is 25 percent higher than the majority of ordinary car owners.

Analysts say that the findings suggest that despite drivers saving more money by having fuel-efficient hybrids, the savings are often eaten up by pleasure driving.

By analyzing the insurance records of 359,309 cars, researchers were able to discover that hybrids are 13 percent more expensive to repair on average. Experts say that the specialized engine parts and body parts make hybrid cars more expensive to repair after accidents. Researchers spent two years analyzing insurance data provided by insurance providers.

Of the many hybrid models currently in the market, the Toyota Highlander Hybrid and the Ford Escape hybrid are the most costly to repair, experts say. For the research, model 2008 hybrid vehicles were used.

Experts explain that because hybrid cars are far lesser to gas up, many owners go on joy rides or unnecessary road trips. Researchers say that they are still unsure if hybrid vehicles encourage motorists to drive more each day. Over time, they can rack up more miles on pleasure drives than regular car owners.

Most owners of hybrid cars were also found to be generally women, usually older, wealthier, and lived in urban centers. Some analysts have suggested that the high incidence of traffic ticket issuances is because the majority of hybrid owners are from the cities.

The researchers who worked on the two-year long gathering and analysis of the data suggested that insurance companies should pay close attention to the findings. At present, most insurers slap roughly the same rates on both hybrid and regular vehicles. Some providers even give substantial discounts for hybrid car owners. With a 25 percent increase in miles driven and a higher possibility of involvement in accidents, hybrid cars can be more costly to insure, experts say.