A study by the US AAA has found that advanced driver-assistance systems can account for up to 37.6 per cent of the total collision repair cost if the sensors that operate the systems need to be replaced and calibrated. According to the AAA, even minor damage to systems such as front radar or distance sensors can result in additional repair expenses of up to R29 100.
“Vehicles equipped with more sophisticated safety systems are much more common now, especially since NHTSA proposed its rule requiring automatic emergency braking earlier this year,” said Greg Brannon, Director of Automotive Engineering at AAA. “Consumers should know about the repair costs associated with these technologies, but they must also understand the importance of fixing them as improperly functioning systems could result in a deadly crash.”
Many variables can affect the cost of repairing ADAS, including the vehicle’s make and model, the type and location of the sensor, and the type of facility where the repair work is performed. The AAA looked at four repair scenarios – front-end collision, side mirror replacement, rear collision, and windshield replacement – to understand the costs of repairing these sensors.
The highest repair cost for ADAS components is attributed to radar sensors and cameras damaged in a front-end crash. However, the replacement of a side mirror represented the largest proportion of repair costs of the three scenarios.
For the three vehicles (model year 2023) evaluated in the report, the AAA found that:
- The average cost of replacing ADAS components in a minor front collision repair was R29 100, or 13.2 per cent of the average total repair
- An average of 70.8 per cent of the repair cost R20 100 was attributable to the ADAS camera included in the side mirror assembly
- The average cost of replacing ADAS components in a minor rear collision repair was R12 920, or 40.9 per cent of the average total repair estimate of R32 000
- The cost of windscreen glass replacement attributable to ADAS components averaged 25.4 per cent (R6 800) of the total repair cost
Individual ADAS component costs (part and specific labour / calibration) over the four repair scenarios range from a low of R5 400 to a high of R30 100. The AAA’s research determined the following ranges for typical ADAS repair expenses:
- Front radar sensors used with automatic emergency braking and adaptive cruise-control systems: R9 400 to R25 400
- Front camera sensors used with automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assistance (does not include the cost of a replacement windscreen): R11 300 to R15 100
- Mirror mount, side mirror used with around-view systems: R13 900 to R30 200
- Windshield camera sensor used with lane-keeping assistance, traffic-sign recognition and pedestrian detection: R17 000 to R22 600
- Front or rear ultrasonic sensors used with parking-assist systems: R5 600 to R18 800.
$/Rand conversions were done on 16 January when 1$ = R18.89