RAC will use telematics data to predict vehicle breakdowns
Issue Date: 2016-02-03

The UK RAC motoring club is working on a service to combine telematics with historical breakdown data to predict the most likely faults with cars and advise drivers before they cause a problem.

The predictive technology is around a year away according to Nick Walker, managing director of RAC Telematics, and would use the firm's extensive records to identify issues early on.

"We're getting to the point where we're able to predict faults," said Walker. "We can warn people, for example, when a diesel particulate filter is about to clog."

The RAC attends nearly 2.5 million roadside breakdowns per year and has a database going back years with tens of millions of records. Walker added: "Our data tells you the top three things likely to go wrong with a vehicle type, make and model of a certain year and mileage. We're normally right because we see it all the time.

"If you add the ability to electronically diagnose and look for fault codes, which we do with every breakdown, then feed it with live telematics data and diagnostic codes, all of a sudden you're able to extract from that level of history what's likely to happen to that vehicle over time."

The rival breakdown giant the AA launched a similar service known as Intelematics Europe, which can remotely diagnose the cause of a breakdown before a recovery vehicle arrives.