Tuesday 19th February 2013


CITROEN FITS INSURANCE BLACK BOXES

C1 will be the first car to feature a telemetry-recording device as standard


Good thing or bad? That's what we've been trying to decide having seen this latest news story from Citroen this morning. What's got our tongues wagging is the French manufacturer's decision to equip its C1 Connexion special edition with a standard - in other words, non-optional - 'black box' recorder.

The knee-jerk reaction is to decry the ever-more-pervasive nose of Big Brother intruding into our driving habits, but Citroen reckons it's doing C1 buyers a favour. The addition of the black box, it says, will allow it to offer free insurance for a year to C1 buyers aged 19-25 with at least two years' no claims bonus. What's more, good driving behaviour will be rewarded by lower premiums in successive years, which should help combat the rising cost of insurance for young people.

A noble cause, then, but the fact you have to have the black box whether you like it or not will rankle for some people. Especially when you find out that there's no way to differentiate between drivers. Citroen says that it's for you as the owner of the car to decide whether the person you let behind the wheel is trustworthy enough not to drive the car recklessly - but of course, if they do, it'll be your next year's premiums they're harming. And that's before we even start on the implications for the future, and more widespread use of Big Brother-esque in-car devices. Eep.

Author: Alex Robbins
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