The system was introduced at a substantial cost in December 2001 to compliment the Thatcham Times and Thatcham Parts databases, which detail the time required for particular repairs and the parts that are necessary.
The graphics were designed to augment the existing databases by offering detailed 3D modelling of vehicle construction and crash vulnerable parts of all the leading European cars.
The aim was to help repairers reduce the risk of ordering incorrect parts. But poor up-take by the software houses that create estimating systems for the UK’s motor insurers has meant the package is no longer-cost effective, leading to its withdrawal.
The move is described as “disappointing” by Lesley Upham, Thatcham director of communications. “It had to be an industry collaboration within the market place, but they felt they weren’t getting the response they needed to drive it forward,” she says.