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THE REAL COST OF CAR INSURANCE: PREMIUMS ONLY PART OF THE PICTURE ... WHAT YOU GET CAN MATTER MORE THAN WHAT YOU PAY

THE REAL COST OF CAR INSURANCE: PREMIUMS ONLY PART OF THE PICTURE ...
 WHAT YOU GET CAN MATTER MORE THAN WHAT YOU PAY
 GRAND BLANC, Mich., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- The following was released by Automotive Recyclers of Michigan:
 There's plenty of talk about high car insurance costs: Consumers complain about painful premiums. AAA of Michigan is fighting for a November vote that could alter the premiums its members pay. Even Gov. John Engler is pushing lawmakers to make car insurance more affordable. Despite all that talk, a major cost of car insurance is being overlooked.
 "Premiums are only a part of the insurance picture," according to Auto Recyclers of Michigan (ARM) board member Gary Sundermann. "What you get back for all those dollars you're investing in insurance can matter even more than the price you pay."
 Sooner or later, that issue affects nearly everyone who drives: Whether it's a parking lot plunk, a bad weather slide onto the shoulder or a freeway fender-bender, safety statistics show the typical driver is likely to suffer a collision at least once in every car or truck they own. Ironically, the real cost of insuring isn't known until after those crashes.
 Less-than-perfect collision repairs may look passable and seem sound; but, they can cost a car or truck owner thousands of dollars down the road, in lost resale value and early deterioration. What's more, short-shrift repair work can cut performance and actually leave a vehicle less safe.
 According to Tom Schram, another ARM board member, "Given the right amounts of time and money, most body shops I know will do the best possible job. But the best job often isn't possible under the insurance companies' pressure to cut repair costs."
 Schram added, "Body shops are forced to cut corners, patching parts that ought to be replaced or installing second-rate aftermarket sheetmetal to get cars and trucks back on the road inside tight insurance budgets. Drivers don't feel the second impact -- that their vehicle really isn't right, or that it's worth a lot less -- until it's too late."
 Recycled parts offer an alternative. "They cut cost, without giving up quality," Sundermann said. "Recycled parts make it possible for body shops to bring cars and trucks back to original condition after a crash, even if the budget's tight. Recycled parts are factory quality, as good or better than the ones they replace. And, they save enough that a shop can afford to give the kind of time and care it takes to get collision repairs really right."
 "Sad thing is, many drivers don't consider their alternatives. Focused on getting back on the road, in the uproar after a crash, they'll put up with whatever happens at a body shop, take whatever they get ... not realizing that a little input on their part might make a big difference in the outcome."
 Schram added, "We understand that's an upsetting time ... a little like having to make tough medical choices when you feel sick. So Auto Recyclers of Michigan has come up with a way to help."
 ARM Yourself is a glovebox guide of car-insider tips from the Auto Recyclers' experts, designed to help drivers make the most of their tough situation after a crash. By following the steps it suggests, car and truck owners will not only feel more in control, they'll be more likely to get what they deserve -- making the most of their hard-earned insurance dollars, even if premiums don't get any lower.
 The guide is available, at no charge, by sending a stamped, self- addressed envelope to:
 ARM Yourself
 Auto Recyclers of Michigan
 G-8469 S. Saginaw
 Grand Blanc, MI 48439
 -0- 10/12/92
 /NOTE: To request additional copies of ARM Yourself, for more information, or to arrange a conversation with Gary Sundermann or Tom Schram, CONTACT: Barbara Kenig of In the Public Eye, 313-647-7300 or 313-647-6480, for Automotive Recyclers of Michigan/ CO: Automotive Recyclers of Michigan ST: Michigan IN: INS AUT SU:


SB -- DE005 -- 8728 10/12/92 08:55 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 12, 1992
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