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An investigation by The Sun newspaper has revealed that any driver van insurance policyholders need to become more vigilant as a response to the increasing levels of sophistication demonstrated by thieves.

This follows revelations last year from security company Tracker, which released data showing that 82 per cent of van thefts occurred without keys in 2017, a vast increase in the number of similar thefts in the previous year.

From exploiting security flaws in the keyless systems of commercial vehicles to duping drivers into leaving doors unlocked, thieves are nowadays able to break into vans in as little as six seconds.

After receiving permission from the the owners of the vehicles concerned, the team from the newspaper used the key fob hacking technology to break into vehicles made by the following manufacturers (also listed are how long it took to break into each van):

  • Skoda: 10 seconds
  • Nissan: 10 seconds
  • Mazda: 12 seconds
  • Renault: 13 seconds
  • Hyundai: 19 seconds
  • Volvo: 23 seconds
  • Volkswagen: 42 seconds

Terrible Technology Democratised

The Sun found that anybody in the UK can buy the hacking technology. Online sellers based in Russia have no checks to prevent the devices from falling into the hands of criminals. However, The Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders (SMMT) has said that it is “working closely with government, insurers and police forces to stop the open sale of equipment which has no legal purpose.”

Ford, which manufactures the Transit van, the most-stolen van in 2017, says it is developing a sleep mode for its key fobs in order to prevent thieves from hacking into signals. Other manufacturers, including Skoda Volkswagen, Nissan, Hyundai, Volvo and Mazda say that they will be doing the same.

In the meantime, any driver van insurance fleet managers should consider security measures such as steering locks, wheel clamps and locking tools away.

 

Last year van insurance customers had some welcome good news with Consumer Intelligence's Van Insurance Index finding that the average price of a premium dropped by 0.9%.

Despite this, the cost of van insurance premiums actually rose by 1.2% in the three months to December and experts predict that they will continue to rise throughout 2019.

It seems strange that the cost of premiums should rise at just a time that the government is taking steps to reduce the cost of accident claims on the motor insurance industry.

However, there are various other factors in place, not least the impact of claims involving the kinds of expensive and sophisticated technology that is becoming increasingly a feature of today's vans. Furthermore, most vans are now manufactured far from these shores so the cost of importing replacement parts only adds to the overall bill.

There has also been some convergence in the cost of van insurance to different demographics. This has been good news for younger drivers, with under 25s seeing the average premium price drop by 5.9% in 2018, but bad news for over 50s who saw the average price of a premium rise by 1.6% in the same period. Drivers who are between 25 and 49 benefited from a small price drop of 0.3%.

There was also some difference in the cost of insurance depending on how a van is used. Vans used purely for business purposes saw average premiums drop by 0.6%, while drivers who used theirs for social, domestic and pleasure policies as well saw their premiums fall by 2.3%.

Consumer Intelligence's pricing expert John Blevins commented, "The price rises in the past three months are signalling a turn in the market after a sustained period of premium reductions.

"Insurers have passed on price cuts where they can but claims costs are dictating premium rises with the increased cost of importing spare parts a major factor when repairing vans following accidents.

Now is the Time to Save

The considerable cost of van insurance means that wherever possible, drivers should find savings where they can. By getting a quote with iVan, you can compare commercial vehicle insurance quotes from a range of providers. Try our Quote Engine today.

 

Any driver van insurance companies this month received news that commercial vehicle manufacturers Ford and Volkswagen are set to co-operate on the development of vans with a view to reducing capital overheads.

In addition to working on the development of conventional vans, the two giants will also be working on self-driving and electric commercial vehicles, with sales from the joint venture predicted to commence in 2022.

The two have been keen to stress that the venture does not amount to or even suggest the possibility of a merger. Instead they say it is merely a response to market conditions; both manufacturers expect significant growth in the commercial vehicle sector over the next decade, with many any driver van insurance fleet managers predicted to grow their operations.

"Over time, this alliance will help both companies create value and meet the needs of our customers and society," commented Ford chief Jim Hackett.

It is reported that Ford will work on large and medium-sized pickups and larger commercial vans, with Volkswagen responsible for the design of smaller vans.

The move towards electric vehicles is seemingly inevitable with so many countries now providing incentives for the managers of any driver van insurance fleets to move towards cleaner technologies - Volkswagen has said that it will spend $800 million on readying its vehicle plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee to produce electric vehicles.

The two hope that the partnership will increase profits while also leading to improved emissions standards and better customer experience.

 

When is the best time to buy your van insurance for any driver policy? This should be a simple question to answer, but according to research from one comparison website, it is one that consumers and fleet managers struggle to answer correctly.

The company says that van insurance for any driver customers are missing a trick, with 55% buying their cover 48 hours or less before the date of renewal, with 26% only beginning the process on the last day of their policy.

However, the company claims that this approach could be costing consumers up to £1,000 a time – and potentially more for fleet managers looking for any driver van insurance policies. It states that by purchasing a policy around three weeks before the expiration of an existing deal, customers can save more than £200—or around 30% of what they might pay by leaving it to the last couple of days.

Furthermore, the comparison website claims that van insurance customers suffer more from tardiness in this regard than their car insurance counterparts who, although they have a tendency to leave it late, do not put it off quite as much as their van driving cousins.

The Impact

In an age in which any driver van insurance cover can be prohibitively expensive to many consumers and trade magazines and internet websites abound with articles about the steps that people can take to obtain cheaper van insurance, the poor level of awareness surrounding the importance of advance renewal planning is surprising.

However, it should come as no surprise; there are very few areas in life where leaving something important to the last minute is likely to result in a favourable outcome.

If you are coming towards the end of your any driver van insurance policy's coverage, you should compare quotes with iVan today – you may find that doing so saves you money on the cost of your policy.

 

FerrariOne man's failure to ensure that he has an adequate any driver van insurance policy came back to haunt him recently when the delivery van he was driving crashed into a parked Ferrari, causing a domino effect which resulted in damage to three more of the Italian supercars.

The 20-year-old, who was driving on his family firm's any driver van insurance policy, was coming to the end of his long night shift when he fell asleep on the job, report newspapers in Taiwan, the country where the accident happened.

Although the man's van insurance policy includes cover for injury, it does not cover damages, meaning that he was personally liable for the £309,000 vehicle repair bill.

However, after the Taiwanese public learned that the man's monthly salary of just £900 meant it would take nearly 30 years for him to be able to meet the repair bill, they cobbled together and have so far raised £19,000 to help cover the cost.

The Nissan van driver's predicament has struck a chord in the country, where hundreds of thousands of low-income families battle to make ends meet. Not only does he earn a low income from his delivery job, he also had to drop out of college because of financial pressures, works night shifts in the restaurant industry to supplement his low income and, when he is not working, cares for his ailing mother.

It is little wonder then that he was so exhausted that he fell asleep at the wheel – he most probably should not have been driving in the first place, even if he had no alcohol in his system and a previously spotless driving record.

The case has brought attention to the issue of wealth disparity on the island; the owners of the Ferraris were standing nearby and watched the whole accident unfold. Fortunately, nobody suffered any injuries.

iVan's view

The accident is instructive in two ways. Firstly, drivers should never get behind the wheel if they are so tired they might lose concentration or fall asleep; secondly, cutting corners on the level of coverage offered by an any driver van insurance can come back to haunt you in the long run – the more comprehensive your level of cover, the more confident you can feel about the level of protection you enjoy while on the road.