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Status Report, Vol. 51, No. 1 | January 28, 2016 Subscribe

Drivers of all ages benefit from Honda crash avoidance features

The combination of forward collision warning and lane departure warning is preventing crashes among Honda Accord drivers of all ages, a new HLDI analysis has found. The observed benefit is biggest for drivers younger than 25.

Since the 2013 model year, Honda has been equipping many of its popular Accord cars, as well as Crosstour SUVs, with camera-based forward collision warning and lane departure warning systems. The Accord's Touring trim comes with a radar-based forward collision warning system and adaptive cruise control, as well as the same lane departure warning system offered on the other trim levels.

Evidence has been mounting in recent years that vehicles equipped with front crash prevention, including Hondas, have lower insurance claim rates (see "Evidence continues to mount in favor of front crash prevention," Aug. 26, 2015).

In an updated analysis, which includes the most recent data available, HLDI found that the rate of claims under property damage liability insurance, which covers damage to other vehicles and property, is 10 percent lower for Accords equipped with the camera-based forward collision and lane departure warning systems.

The frequency of claims under bodily injury liability insurance, which covers injuries to occupants of other vehicles or to other road users, is 24 percent lower with the feature. Claims under medical payment coverage, for injuries to people in the insured vehicle, are 22 percent lower.

The radar-based system with adaptive cruise control is associated with a 13 percent decrease in property damage liability claim frequency and a 27 percent decrease in medical payment claim frequency. Other effects weren't statistically significant.

HLDI analysts then looked at how the effectiveness varied by driver age. Focusing on the camera-based system, they found that the drivers younger than 25 had the biggest claim rate reductions — 15 percent under property damage liability and 45 percent under bodily injury liability. For drivers ages 25-64, the declines were 10 percent under property damage liability and 20 percent under bodily injury liability. For drivers older than 64, the decreases were 7 percent and 25 percent, but they weren't statistically significant.

A limitation of the HLDI analysis is that the age of a driver is that of the rated driver — the one assigned to a vehicle for insurance purposes within a household. That person isn't always the one driving at the time of a crash.

The large effect for drivers younger than 25 is consistent with a recent HLDI analysis on point of impact. That study found that frontal crashes accounted for a greater proportion of collision claims made by young drivers than by drivers of other ages. Based on other analyses of crash avoidance features, it is believed that most of the benefit from Honda's technology comes from forward collision warning, not lane departure warning (see Status Report special issue: crash avoidance, July 3, 2012).

The large benefit for young drivers is encouraging because overall they have the highest claim frequencies of any age group.

"It's good news that drivers of all ages are benefiting from Honda's forward collision and lane departure warning systems," HLDI Vice President Matt Moore says. "It's great news that the technology is helping the most crash-prone group."

Percent differences in claim frequency for Hondas equipped with
forward collision and lane departure warning features

Camera-based system
Accord/Crosstour

Radar-based system
Accord Touring; includes adaptive cruise control

Change in property damage liability claim frequency by driver age
with forward collision and lane departure warning

SIDEBAR
Lane departure warning gets turned off

Forward collision warning is much more likely than lane departure warning to be turned on in Hondas with both features.

©1996-2016, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Highway Loss Data Institute | www.iihs.org