Thatcham Research’s escribe celebrates 10 years
escribe visual - laptop screen

Thatcham Research’s escribe celebrates 10 years of providing vital intelligence to the repair industry

As Thatcham Research marks the 10th anniversary of its online escribe repair methods tool, the automotive risk intelligence company has given an insight into how emerging vehicle technology is altering the profile of the UK car parc.

Since the online version of escribe was first launched in 2012[1], it has become the UK’s leading online repair methods solution. It gives insurance engineers, vehicle damage assessors (VDAs) and repairers instant access to methods and technical information – across more than 1,000 models – and enables the industry to promptly return damaged vehicles to their pre-accident condition.

In a recent survey conducted by Thatcham Research, 89 percent of users valued escribe as a one-stop-shop reference tool, and a further 87 percent highly rated the portal for its ease of use.

Moving with the times

escribe contains over 500,000 repair methods with users completing close to two million downloads every year. Crucially, escribe continues to keep pace with car parc change – particularly when it comes to the increased proliferation of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and electric vehicle (EV) technology.

Karen Jakes, Thatcham Research Senior Product Manager, said:

“As the profile of the cars we drive continues to evolve rapidly, its vital that repairers are provided with dynamic repair intelligence.

“escribe is uniquely positioned to support repairers in overcoming the challenges they're facing. Our vehicle-led research programme allows us to add 7,000 new methods per month, powered by a combination of expert vehicle data analysis and rigorous engineering grade research conducted in our state-of-the-art Repair Technology Centre.

“It plays an important role in not only ensuring safe repair, but also providing repairers with BS10125 compliant methods.”

ADAS in the spotlight

Thatcham Research noted that in 2022, the number of new car sales with standard fit autonomous emergency braking (AEB) stood at 91 percent, compared to only 53 percent in 2018. It also observed that 25 percent of licensed cars had standard fit AEB in 2022, compared to just 10 percent in 2018.

The demand for ADAS information from repairers significantly increased over the same period with data showing that methods requests increased by 58 percent, while downloads for ADAS equipped vehicles rose by 45 percent.

Thatcham Research has also recorded a 300 percent increase in ADAS Alert ‘look-ups’ within escribe since 2018. Alerts contain information about sensor type, location, calibration requirements, as well as other system and technology types that may be fitted to the vehicle.

Increased EV awareness

During the last five years, the EV car parc in the UK has expanded significantly, with 17 percent of new car sales attributed to battery electric vehicles (BEVs) in 2022, compared to only one percent in 2018.

Unsurprisingly, interest in EVs from within the vehicle repair industry has increased hugely as technicians become more aware of the need to identify specific considerations that ensure the safe handling of EVs.

Thatcham Research has noted a 331 percent rise in methods requests for vehicles within the EV market (BEV, HEV and PHEV) alone during the last five years, while the number of methods downloads has increased by 333 percent.

Jakes said: “While coverage stood at 98 percent of licensed cars and LCVs and 92 percent of newly registered cars and LCVs in 2022, the constantly evolving nature of modern vehicles requires a methods solution that evolves in parallel.

“The rise of emerging tech and its impact on the repair industry is something we see every day in our data. And with vehicle manufacturer annual zero emission sales targets rising exponentially in response to government proposals, escribe’s fundamental role in supporting sustainable repair is only going to increase.

“As we look ahead to another decade of escribe success, our dedicated research engineering, vehicle data management and helpline teams are focused on delivering the best repair advice, guidance and recommendations to our user community.”

[1]Thatcham Research has been providing repair methods to the repair industry since its inception in 1969, first in the form of hard copies, before shifting to Compact Disc format in 1999.

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