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UK Crash Repair Costs Continue To Increase At Unprecedented Levels Placing Pressure On Motor Insurer Profits


  • Insurance-related repair expenditure rises by 4% in the first half of 2019
  • New vehicle technologies accelerate accident related parts prices
  • Repair levels forecast to decrease slightly in 2019
  • For further information visit: trendtracker.co.uk

The UK’s most comprehensive report on the UK Car Body Repair Market, originally released in January 2019 by independent research company Trend Tracker, has recently published an update.

Analysis of the data shows the average repair cost trend for cars is continuing to rise in the first half of the year to a weighted average of £1,919 from £1,845 per repair recorded in 2018. This represents a 4% overall increase in insurance related accident repair expenditure, for all makes/models of cars, for the first half of the year.

Looking at the longer term average repair cost trend for cars, the overall average cost repair has risen quite significantly; from a weighted average of £1366 in 2013 to £1919 for the first half of 2019 (a 40.5%, or £553, increase over the period).

Parts make-up approximately 42% of a total average accident repair cost; a figure that has remained fairly consistent for the past six-years, which means that in the first half of 2019, the average parts spend on car repairs was £803, compared to £787 in 2018 and £721 in 2017. The cost trend continues upwards!

“Working with one of our primary partners, Solera Audatex, we have analysed the latest repair cost data, both annually and over a six-year period1. The data clearly demonstrates that vehicle design and build complexity, including advanced automotive engineering technology system integration, has resulted in higher accident related parts cost increases and additional labour time being required to return a vehicle back to the road safely, leading to higher costs” says Mark Bull, Trend Tracker’s director and research analyst.

Whilst car accident repair costs increase, motor claims frequency is expected to fall slightly in 2019.  The rate at which policyholders are claiming against their motor policy has continued its long term decline, reaching the lowest level on record in the second quarter of 2019, at 11.4%2.

Notes To Editors:

1:  The analysis comprises of 12 million insurance company authorised repairs transacted via the Solera Audatex platform since 1 January 2013 to 30 June 2019.

2:  Source: Association of British Insurers, private car exposure Q2 2019

About the report:

The Future of the UK Car Body Repair Market, 2019-2024 Report updates Trend Tracker’s in-depth coverage of the structure, volume and dynamics of this sector of the retail motor industry. Like previous editions, this report is produced for vehicle repair businesses, vehicle manufacturers, motor insurers, accident management and claims solutions providers, investors, market analysts, fleet operators, trade associations, consultants, paint companies, paint distribution and parts suppliers and others who need to understand the risks and opportunities facing each of the key protagonists in a punishingly competitive market.

It was published in January 2019 by Trend Tracker Limited (see www.trendtracker.co.uk) at £1,495 ex VAT, inclusive of printed report, pdf electronic copy and PowerPoint executive summary.

For more information or further comment contact Mark Bull on +44 (0)7702 435629 or email enquiries@trendtracker.co.uk.

Report partners include:

3M, Solera Audatex, Auto Body Projects, BMS, CAPS, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Industry Insights, Innovation Group, Morelli Group, PPG and Thatcham Research.

About Trend Tracker:

Trend Tracker was formed in the UK in 2003 by experienced specialists as a company dedicated to providing accurate and informed automotive industry research. We undertake bespoke client studies and publish our own reports, and unlike most research businesses, have the automotive industry experience to help our customers implement business improvements predicated by the information we provide.

The collective automotive industry experience of Trend Tracker’s directors and analysts spans over 30 years in * Aftersales service and repair * Body repair * Consumer satisfaction and retention * Motor retail management * Quantitative and qualitative market research * Automotive media and marketing * Industry networking events and awards ceremonies.

Mark Bull, director of Trend Tracker Ltd and Auto Body Projects Ltd, Linkedin profile page:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/mark-bull-07266114a/