FORT MYERS, Fla. - Your car is tracking your every move, and it might just save you some money. WINK News Call For Action first showed you what your car knows about you. But now we're showing you how that information might save you a little money.
We spent a month testing Drivewise from Allstate, which recently became available in Florida. Once it arrived in the mail we took a trip to the sales department at WINK TV to find a volunteer willing to plug the device into their Onboard Diagnostics Port underneath their dashboard.
She's a little camera shy, so instead of showing her face, we'll just her results, which aren't that great. But as Justin Herndon with Allstate explains, there's always time to change your driving patterns.
"Something that's unique about Drivewise is that it's a behavior device, it allows you to improve your behavior," said Herndon.
Allstate gives you a Web Portal where it shows you a letter grade, our volunteer scored a C-. Along with individual scores on your mileage, the time of day you're driving, your braking patters and speed.
This way you can improve your grade by making changes to the way you drive. Our driver has a bit of a lead foot. She drove above 80 mph for 16 miles. Her 20 mile commute to work also contributes to her C- score on mileage. Keep that in mind if you have a long commute yourself.
You can also compare your scores to other Allstate drivers. The average is a B-.
"A lot of people say 'I'm a really safe driver, this thing is perfect for me' this gives you an opportunity to prove how safe you are," Herndon said.
This also means you have to give up a lot of information. For instance, the device tracks when you're driving, which can be used against you in a lawsuit, divorce or criminal proceeding.
"If you have one of these in your car and you get in a terrible wreck, and it's your fault, you're going to be sorry you had that in your car because it's going to show how fast you were going before you collided with the person," said Mark Bonner, a professor at Ave Maria School of Law.
Bonner urges consumers to consider privacy concerns before they openly share their driving habits.
"There's a tradeoff between your pocketbook and your privacy," Bonner said.
Allstate offers a 10% discount for the first six months you use Drivewise. After that, the discount is based on driving performance. The best drivers get a 30% cut on their insurance. The worst drivers receive no discount. That was the case for our driver who had below average speed, mileage and braking habits.
"Hopefully it helps you become a better, safer driver, and hopefully it improves a discount," Herndon said.
Progressive, State Farm, GMAC Insurance and Travelers all offer similar devices. Industry experts also expect to see nearly every provider offering a similar device in the future.