Today Allstate introduced Drive Wise®, their usage-based auto insurance that seems designed to compete with Progressive’s Snapshot℠.   Details can be found in their press release here: .

Here is how these two innovative auto insurance products are similar:

  • The policy holder attaches a wireless unit to a 1996 or newer vehicle’s under-dash connector to transmit driving data to the insurer
  • The product is “behavior based”, meaning the insurer monitors when and how the vehicle is driven (but not where), in addition to how much
  • The consumer only learns the amount of discount after signing up for the policy, driving data are transmitted, and the insurer evaluates it

These are their differences:

  • Allstate’s Drive Wise is only available in Illinois, but planned for more states early next year.  Progressive’s Snapshot is already in 25 states.
  • Drive Wise offers a maximum 30% discount.  Snapshot’s maximum discount varies somewhat by state, but is also 30% in some states.
  • Drive Wise offers an immediate 10% discount, and substitutes the earned discount of up to 30% later, based on miles driven and a calculated driving score.  Snapshot usually (but not yet in every state) starts its earned discount after 30 days of driving.
  • Drive Wise likely requires its device to remain attached to keep earning discounts.  Snapshot usually (but once again, not yet in every state) can be returned after the first 6-month policy, and a renewal discount based on the six months driving will be applied to the renewal policy.

All usage-based auto insurance will offer consumers who drive less than average a way to save money.  Plus, behavior-based policies like Snapshot and Drive Wise can save lower-risk drivers even more.