The Truth About AI-Powered Vehicle Inspections

27 May 2024

Have you ever seen an incredibly catchy video game trailer and then after experiencing the whole product, felt utterly disappointed? The plot doesn’t live up to expectations, and the graphics aren’t half as good as those in the trailer. Unfortunately, this scenario isn't limited to video games; it extends to AI solutions as well.

AI solution providers might overpromise, leaving clients with a reality far from their initial expectations. In a market flooded with various AI solutions, it is crucial to know what is genuinely technically feasible—distinguishing between solution providers who can deliver and those merely fabricating capabilities.

In this article, the DriveX team gives you an overview of what’s possible with vehicle inspection AI, and what is overpromising.

Possibilities and myths in vehicle inspection AI solutions

To give you a good overview of what’s possible with vehicle inspection AI, and also to manage expectations, we listed the main points for you. Here are some possibilities.

  1. Damage detection - AI can analyze images to find different types of damages such as dents, scratches, cracks, chips, paint issues, and missing parts on vehicle bodies.

    DriveX's damage detection

  2. Anomaly detection - AI can identify mismatched parts, anomalies in vehicle components and signs of tampering.

  3. Classification- AI is able to identify the severity and type of the damage, allowing to prioritise repairs accordingly.

  4. Registration number and VIN code detection - AI can verify whether the number plate or VIN on the image matches the requested one.

  5. Documentation and reporting - automatically generated documentation of a vehicle's state can streamline the communication between customers, claim handlers and repair shops.

  6. Integration with repair systems or CRMs - this allows to schedule repairs quicker and prevent unnecessary replacements, when a part can be repaired instead.

Myths surrounding vehicle inspection solutions

  1. 100% accuracy

A common myth is that AI inspection can be 100% accurate in damage detection. Achieving perfection is impossible because of variations in lighting conditions, image quality and the complexity of damage patterns. Also, accuracy shouldn’t be the only number to track. You should also be aware of other metrics like precision and recall, as accuracy alone might be misleading.

  1. Replacing human inspectors/technicians

While AI can automate certain parts of the inspection process, human touch is still needed for full technical inspections and higher level decision-making. AI inspection can only help (for now) with damages that are visible.

  1. Universal solution

Not all vehicle inspection solutions are universal. Different solutions may specialise in specific types of damages or vehicles. For example, if you can inspect a car with a certain  AI, it doesn’t mean it will also work on trucks.

  1. Complex implementation

While AI-powered inspection solutions can be advanced, they don't necessarily require takes-a-team-of-ten implementation processes. Many solutions are designed to integrate seamlessly into existing workflows with minimal disruption.

Checklist for evaluating AI solution providers

We've made a list to help you choose the best AI for your needs. Here it is.

  1. Define your goals. You may not need all the bells and whistles that some service providers offer. This can help you save money and potentially manage your stress levels.

  2. Check their website and social media. Determine which features they offer and assess their trustworthiness.

  3. Verify their promises. Learn about machine learning performance metrics (for example, on Evidently AI's website) and make sure the provider is not dazzling you with an accuracy of 99%, which might mean absolutely nothing.

  4. If you don’t understand, ask. Ask for an explanation of the numbers to ensure they know what they’re talking about and can deliver on their promises.

  5. Learn from others. Read their case studies and client testimonials to assess their credibility beyond the flashy logos on their website.

By no means did we list all AI capabilities and limitations in vehicle inspection AI, but it can be a starting point for you to better understand the field. By being aware of the myths and setting realistic expectations, you can leverage AI in vehicle inspections while avoiding overpromises and overhyped claims.