Article Search


Kiwi drivers skimping on insurance and servicing


A new survey of New Zealand drivers shows that their income level affects their car insurance and servicing

Results of the Motor Trade Association (MTA) survey revealed that 14% of motorists surveyed did not have any vehicle insurance, 15% had third party insurance only, and 70% had comprehensive cover on their vehicle.

Results also showed that more than half of motorists surveyed failed to service their vehicles regularly.

The survey of 500 vehicles was carried out in April at 25 service stations across the country and looked at a range of vehicle ownership issues, including insurance and servicing history.

Demographics for uninsured vehicles showed a typical trend towards older vehicles not being insured. The average age for a vehicle without insurance was 1995, three years older than New Zealand’s median vehicle age. The average odometer reading was also higher for uninsured vehicles at around 205,000km travelled in comparison to 154,000km as the national average.

Results also showed that 51% of participants without any insurance on the vehicle they were driving earned less than $25,000 per annum. While the majority (70%) of vehicles without insurance had drivers between the ages of 26 to 65.

MTA spokesperson Ana Zandi says the survey results are quite surprising but show that skimping on basic vehicle requirements is a reflection of tough economic times.

“Our results show that people are not only cutting back on basic vehicle costs such as insurance cover, but some are also failing to relicense (‘register’) their vehicles, with an estimated 50 percent holding off servicing their vehicles.

“Clearly a person’s income level directly affects their ability to insure their vehicle or carry out routine vehicle maintenance along with keeping up with vehicle relicensing (‘registration’) requirements. This is not an ideal scenario.

"Longer term, owners risk the safety of their vehicle as well as other road users. Interestingly, they are also reducing their vehicle’s ability to maximise its fuel efficiency.”

Regions that had high levels of motorists without insurance included Wellington (21 percent), Manawatu (20 percent) and Auckland (19 percent). Only 10 percent of Christchurch motorists surveyed had no insurance.

Auto Trader New Zealand