Relief for motorists as average cost of comprehensive cover falls

The average price paid for motor insurance has recorded its first quarterly fall in two years, according to insurers.

Despite the drop, average costs during the first quarter of 2018 were the highest that the Association of British Insurers (ABI) has ever seen at this time of year.

The ABI's latest Motor Insurance Premium Tracker found the average price paid for private comprehensive motor insurance was £478, down £13 on the final quarter of 2017, as well as being the first quarterly fall in premiums in two years.

The index, which started in 2012, measures prices consumers pay for their motor insurance, rather than quotes.

The ABI said £478 is the highest average premium it has recorded for the first quarter of any year.

It marks a £14 increase on the same quarter last year.

The ABI said the price of motor insurance is subject to seasonal trends and average motor insurance premiums can fall in the first quarter of the year due to new car registrations in March, which boost demand for motor insurance, leading to more competition.

It said the Civil Liability Bill, which makes changes to the personal injury compensation system in England and Wales, may also have contributed to a more pronounced fall in the first quarter of 2018.

Rob Cummings, the ABI's assistant director, head of motor and liability, said: "While this small fall in the last few months gives some relief to motorists, it is in line with seasonal trends and the underlying cost pressures from things like personal injury claims remain."

He continued: "The Civil Liability Bill now going through Parliament will fix a broken system and help millions of motorists whose premiums had been going up and up over the last two years."