Sneak Attack: EVs more likely to be flagged as drivable post-collision; repairs remain more expensive

Toronto, Ontario — Electric vehicles are more likely to be deemed driveable after a collision event, according to Ryan Mandell, claims performance director for Mitchell.

In 2023, the average repairable severity for EVs in Canada was around 32 percent, higher than the average repairable severity of ICE vehicles, notes Mandell. EV repairable severity shrinks to 16.6 percent when normalizing vehicle year data to 2020 or newer.

According to the data, Mandell says EVs are more likely to be flagged drivable unless it’s a rear-end hit. He hypothesizes this is due to fewer “moving parts” in electric vehicles compared to internal combustion engines.

EVs also house many powertrain components in the rear of the vehicle, such as an electric motor, that are lacking in ICE automobile designs, making them more apt to be considered non-driveable after a rear-end impact.

Mandell also notes that EVs are more likely to have an airbag deployed in a collision, and electrified models are twice as likely to have a sensor line mentioned in the estimate.

During a recent industry meeting in Toronto, Mandell delivered the results of a recent case study done by Mitchell, wherein a claim on a 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning was compared to a similar claim on a 2022 Ford F-150 XLT 3.5L EcoBoost V5.

In this scenario, both vehicles had suffered a moderate front-end impact that called for:

  • Replacement of the bumper assembly and associated components
  • Replacement of the grille assembly, headlamps and associated components
  • Replacement of the hood panel
  • Blend left and right fenders
  • Utilize OEM Repair procedures for any specific required operations

When the claims were compared, several front bumper components were similar, but one additional part—the front bumper isolator—was found to be present on the Lightning but not the XLT, touting a price average of $412.58. The Lightning front upper cover is also approximately $300 more expensive than the same part on the XLT.

The Lightning grille was also notably more expensive—by about $305—and the electrified version of the truck is equipped with an additional part that is not present on the XLT model. Not to mention that OEM repair procedures dictate that the high-voltage battery be removed and re-installed as part of the repair process, adding approximately 3.4 hours of mechanical to your estimate.

The sample study found that the overall repair cost dealt for the Lightning for the same part-type operations was $3,508.17.


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