After a long wait, Tesla Insurance is finally expanding outside of California, starting with Texas next week.
The automaker aims to “aspirationally” expand to “most of the US” next year.
In 2019, Tesla launched its own insurance program, starting with availability in California, where the automaker claims up to 30% cheaper premiums than the competition.
It’s Tesla’s second entry in the insurance industry after its InsureMyTesla program in partnership with third-party insurers.
The new program is directly brokered by Tesla through State National Insurance, and the automaker is much more involved in the entire process – basically becoming an insurer itself.
It was always the plan to expand Tesla Insurance to more states, but it has proven difficult as the automaker has to navigate regulatory environments in different markets.
Earlier this year, there were reports that Tesla was making progress in Illinois, Texas, and Washington, but nothing came of it until now.
At Tesla’s shareholder’s meeting yesterday, CEO Elon Musk confirmed that Tesla Insurance is going to go live in Texas next week:
Tesla insurance goes live in Texas next week. We have it in California. We are going to be upgrading the version in California, because we want to have the kind of real-time insurance where your insurance costs are based on your actual driving history, which is the right way to do it. But we are currently not allowed to do that in California for some reason. So, we are trying to get permission from the regulators to be allowed to give accurate scores for insurance like that’s the thing you would want to do.
He is talking about using actual telemetry from the vehicles to come up with those “scores,” just like Tesla is using now for its “safety driving score” related to the wider release of its Full Self-Driving Beta.
Musk added that Tesla is aiming to expand its insurance product to “most of the US” next year:
Hopefully, I don’t know, we probably have most of the country next year aspirationally, that’s our goal.
The product is also expected to be important for Tesla’s rollout of its Full Self-Driving package.
The automaker is not ready to shift responsibility from the driver to the system, but once it will be, it would be easier to achieve with its own insurance package.