Driving sustainably: HUK-COBURG expands telematics offering to include incentives for being environmentally conscious

13 May 2021

My Tesla Adventures Family Trip to Montana USA. Photo Credit: Sergei Belski

With immediate effect, ICMIF member HUK-COBURG (Germany) is showing its telematics customers how environmentally aware their driving style is through its “Mein Auto” (My Car) app.

The new “Eco Drive” feature evaluates sustainable driving behaviour based on speed, acceleration and route characteristics. A particularly environmentally friendly driving style is rewarded with points, which at the end of the year, are collated and can be exchanged into a donation to selected charitable organisations. Therefore, drivers have an additional incentive to collect as many points as possible and become more aware of the benefits of an environmentally conscious driving style.

“Tests have shown that drivers with poorer driving values consume 10% more fuel than those with better ones,” explains Dr Jörg Rheinländer, Member of the Board of Management of HUK-COBURG. “This has prompted us to create incentives with our telematics product not only for safe driving, but also for environmentally conscious driving,” Rheinländer continues.

From the telematics data on speed, acceleration and route characteristics, an ideal environmentally friendly consumption is calculated, which is compared with the actual driving behaviour and displayed on a graduated scale. With this feedback, users can assess their driving style and adjust it accordingly.

Driving in an environmentally conscious way and doing good

If the user is one of the most environmentally conscious drivers at the end of the month, he or she collects points. At the end of the calendar year, the collected points of all environmentally conscious drivers are converted into a euro amount, which HUK-COBURG gives to support charitable organisations.

“Our society will continue to be mobile. With Eco Drive, we are consciously providing incentives to make mobility environmentally conscious and responsible,” says Dr Jörg Rheinländer.

HUK-Coburg’s journey to create an effective telematics solution

HUK-Coburg first began experimenting with telematics in motor insurance in 2013. It launched its first telematics product in 2016, a black box solution that was only offered to young drivers in an attempt to lower their premiums.

In 2019, it discontinued this offering, and launched a new telematics solution available to all HUK customers. The new product uses sensor technology to assess driving behaviour and a smartphone app (“Mein Auto”) to provide specific real-time feedback. Not only does the new telematics solution offer HUK’s customers a potential premium discount of up to 30%, it also actively promotes a positive change in driving behaviour that can improve traffic safety and reduce fuel consumption.

Earlier this year, HUK-Coburg shared insights and experiences in developing its telematics solution on an ICMIF webinar. From HUK’s actuarial approach and algorithm for assessing driving behaviour to how its telematics solution has evolved based on data accuracy and customer feedback.

Dr Daniel John, Head of the Actuarial Department for Non-life Insurance, also covered some of the ethical issues associated with telematics and how effective telematics has been in terms of risk differentiation and selection, as well as thoughts on the future possibilities for telematics to contribute to both sustainability and the construction of safer and better roads.

A recording and transcription of this webinar is available for ICMIF members to access via the member-only ICMIF Knowledge Hub. There is also a case study article on how HUK-Coburg’s use of telematics has the potential to support sustainability, as traffic can become safer and adapted driving can become more resource-friendly, helping to reduce fuel consumption.

For member-only strategic content on the cooperative/mutual insurance sector, ICMIF members have exclusive access to a range of online resources through the ICMIF Knowledge Hub.

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