Some states' insurance commissions and insurance industry alliances are not pleased with General Motors' new free insurance incentive to spur new-vehicle purchases.
GM is collaborating with MetLife Home and Auto to provide a no-cost, one-year auto-insurance policy as an incentive to attract new-car buyers.
The offer underwent a test phase in Washington and Oregon, states with traditional heav-import sales.
GM spokesman Tom Henderson says the auto maker is testing the program “to determine consumer appeal of insurance as a new standard feature,” like a warranty packaged in the cost of a new vehicle.
Departments of insurance of both states in which GM is piloting the program approved of it, he notes.
However some quarters of the insurance industry question its validity.
In National Underwriter, a trade publication, the Professional Insurance Agents Western Alliance “contends the program may not be legal.”
Eighteen states have approved program filings. But the Indiana Department of Insurance asked MetLife Home and Auto to withdraw its filing, as it will not be approved in Indiana based on legality issues there.
Henderson cites research indicating 23% of vehicle buyers say they could not afford a new car because of the insurance coverage required.
“This program is one way we hope to make buying a new GM vehicle more affordable,” he says.