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Driverless car features are designed to make driving a safer experience for everyone on the roads. As driverless car features start to become more common in newer car models, one of the main questions people are asking is whether these features will impact their car insurance.

Current Australian law requires a human driver to be in control of the vehicle regardless of the level of autonomy. This means that drivers of vehicles with autonomous/driverless technology are still responsible for actions of the vehicle including breaches of traffic laws and potentially for damage resulting from crashes.

Driverless Car Features

While fully driverless cars aren’t available yet, Budget Direct insures a number of cars with some level of autonomy.

We currently insure cars with many driverless features such as:

Autopilot

Adaptive cruise control

Auto Emergency Braking

Automatic parking

Lane-keep assist

Sign recognition

Steering assist

Reversing camera

Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB)

Autonomous Emergency Braking is a vehicle safety technology designed to help drivers avoid or reduce the severity of crashes. AEB can alert drivers to imminent crashes and can apply the brakes independent of the driver.

Manufacturer AEB Technology Insured by Budget Direct?
Alfa Romeo Autonomous Emergency Braking  
Audi Pre Sense Plus  
BMW Driving Assistant Plus  
Ford Active City Stop  
Holden Automatic Emergency Braking City Stop  
Honda Collision Mitigation Braking System  
Hyundai Autonomous Emergency Braking  
Kia Autonomous Emergency Braking  
Land Rover Autonomous Emergency Braking  
Lexus Pre-collision Safety System with Brake Assist  
Mazda Smart City Brake Support  
Mercedes-Benz PRE-SAFE Brake  
Mini City Collision Mitigation  
Mitsubishi Forward Collision Mitigation  
Nissan Intelligent Emergency Braking with Forward- Collision Warning  
Peugeot Active City Brake  
Skoda Multi-Collision Braking  
Subaru Pre-Collision Braking System (Eyesight)  
Toyota Pre-Crash Safety System  
Volkswagen City Emergency Braking  
Volvo City Safety  

Insurance Council of Australia

The Insurance Council of Australia states that it is imperative for all organisations and individuals using autonomous technology to have appropriate levels of insurance to cover any potential liabilities for damage or injury that may occur.

What’s covered?

Loss or damage to your vehicle

Cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle due to collision or crash, malicious acts, theft, attempted theft, fire, storm, hail and floods.

New car replacement

If your new car is written off within two years or 40,000km (Gold Car Insurance policy) of the original registration (whichever comes first), we’ll replace it with a brand-new one.

Damage to other people’s property

Up to $20 million of legal liability cover for the damage your car causes to other people’s vehicles and other property.

Hire car following theft

If your vehicle is stolen, we’ll  reimburse you for the reasonable cost of a hire car for up to 14 days, up to a maximum of $1,000.

Towing

Reasonable costs of recovery, towing and storage if your car’s stolen or unsafe to drive following an accident.

Personal items

Belongings damaged in a collision or stolen from your car, up to $500 (Gold Car Insurance policy).

Replacement keys

Replacement of your car keys and/or remote locking device if they’re stolen, up to $1,000.

Caravan and/or trailer

Damage to your trailer and/or caravan (Gold Car Insurance policy, up to $1,000) following a collision (but not their contents).

Emergency costs

Transport for the driver and passengers if your damaged car is undriveable or, if transport is unavailable, temporary accommodation – $100 a day, up to a total of $850 (Gold Car Insurance policy).

Upgrade your cover

For an additional premium, you can customise your comprehensive car insurance by adding one or more of these optional benefits to your policy:

Accident hire car

If we agree to pay your at fault claim, we’ll arrange a hire car for you to use for up to 14 days.

Reduced window glass excess

Reduce your excess for damage to your vehicle’s window glass, including its windscreen and rear and side windows , to just $40.

Choice of repairer

If you have a claim with us, you can nominate your preferred repairer.

How do I add an optional benefit to my policy?

You can add one or more of these benefits when you get a quote and buy a policy or — if you’ve already bought one — by contacting us or logging into your online account and editing your policy.

(Note that you can reduce your window-glass excess only within 21 days of buying your policy, renewing it, or transferring it to a replacement vehicle.)

Get a quote

Because we don’t insure unsafe drivers, we can keep our premiums low for safer drivers like you.

Get a comprehensive car insurance quote and buy a policy online and you’ll receive a 15% discount; or call us on 1800 700 027.

Find out more

The information on this page is a summary only. For more details about Budget Direct car insurance, including the terms, conditions, limits and exclusions that apply, please read the product disclosure statement (PDS)

How to make a claim

If you need to make a claim, we’re here to help you get back on the road as quickly and smoothly as possible. Make a claim on your comprehensive car insurance policy.

Award-winning Australian car insurance

After comparing our comprehensive cover with that offered by other insurers, Canstar presented us with one of only two national awards for Outstanding Value Car Insurance award in 2020 — the 14th year in a row we’ve won one. Budget Direct is also Money magazine’s Insurer of the Year in 2020 — the fourth year in a row we’ve landed the title.

CANSTAR's Outstanding Value Car Insurance Australia 2007-2018
Money Magazine's Insurer of the Year 2020

More ways to save

Here are some ways you can reduce your comprehensive car insurance premium even further:

Driver-age restriction

You can restrict your policy to drivers over a certain age (21+, 25+, 30+, 40+, 50+); the biggest age range of any major insurer.

‘Low kilometres’ policy

You can get a lower premium if your car travels less than 12,000km a year.

Higher excess

If you increase your Basic Excess, we’ll reduce your premium.

No-claim discount

For each claim-free year, you’ll receive a no-claim discount (NCD) on your premium (capped at 5+ years).

How can I get these savings?

You can select your driver-age restriction, kilometres travelled and/or Basic Excess when you get a quote and buy a policy or – if you’ve already bought one – by calling us on 1300 306 560 or logging into your online account and editing your policy.

More reasons to choose us

24/7 claims

Lodge a claim over the phone or online at any time of the day or night, 365 days a year.

Reliable repairs

Get a lifetime guarantee on authorised repairs to your car for as long as you own it.

Change of vehicle

If you replace your Budget Direct-insured car with a similar one, we’ll automatically provide the same level of cover for your replacement car for 14 days from the purchase date – even if you don’t contact us.

Flexible payments

Pay your premium fortnightly, monthly or yearly, the last of which is the most economical.

Roadside Assistance

For just $79.95 a year – less than $1.60 a week – you can take advantage of our 24/7 nationwide Roadside Assistance service. 

It can be purchased with or without a Budget Direct car insurance policy. 

With our Australian network of more than 2,500 contractors, you’re never too far from help.

Frequently asked questions

Does Budget Direct insure Driverless cars?

There are no fully driverless cars available for purchase at this stage, but Budget Direct does insure several models of cars that have driverless/safety features.

Is car insurance compulsory in Australia?

There is one type of car insurance required by law in Australia: compulsory third party (CTP) insurance.

All vehicles in Australia must have CTP insurance before they can be registered and legally driven on the road.

What does compulsory third party (CTP) insurance cover?

CTP insurance protects you against compensation claims made against you (or the driver of your car) if you are wholly or partly at fault for injuring or killing other drivers, passengers, motorcyclists, pedestrians, and/or cyclists in an accident.

Instead of you paying the compensation – including treatment, rehabilitation and care costs and, if necessary, income support payments and funeral expenses – your CTP insurer pays it.

Similarly, if you’re injured or killed in an accident caused by someone else, you or your dependents can claim compensation from that person’s CTP insurer.

CTP insurance does not cover damage to your car or other people’s property (e.g. their car and home).

For more information, contact the CTP insurance regulator/administrator in your state/territory.

What are the different types of car insurance?

Budget Direct offers three types of car insurance cover:

  • Comprehensive Car Insurance covers loss or damage to your car due to an accident (regardless of who’s at fault), severe weather, fire, vandalism, and theft; and your liability for accidental damage your car causes to other people’s property (e.g. their car and home).
  • Third Party Property Only Car Insurance covers your liability for accidental damage your car causes to other people’s property (e.g. their car and home). It does not cover damage to your car (unless it’s damaged in a no-fault accident with an uninsured driver, in which case your car has limited cover).
  • Third Party Property, Fire and Theft Car Insurance provides the same protection as Third Party Property Only, plus cover for loss or damage to your car if it’s stolen or catches fire.

The type of cover you have is shown on your car insurance certificate and in your online account.

Compare Budget Direct car insurance

Which insurance covers loss or damage to my car?

Our comprehensive car insurance policy covers loss or damage to your car due to an accident (regardless of who’s at fault), severe weather, fire, vandalism, and theft.

Which insurance covers damage to someone else's car?

Our comprehensive and third party property policies all cover your liability for accidental damage your car causes to other people’s property (e.g. their car and home).

^Online discount terms and conditions apply.
*Based on customers who have made a claim on Budget Direct Comprehensive Car Insurance, and who were surveyed between 10 February 2015 and 31 May 2018. Visit www.budgetdirectreviews.com.au for more details.
‡ Your car would not be covered while it was being driven by someone under the restricted age.

Get a comprehensive car insurance quote online