Royal & SunAlliance (R&SA) has been appointed to the Hastings Direct motor panel, its first new panel appointment since it announced its return to the broker panel market.

Adrian Brown R&SA UK director of personal lines said that the insurer had improved its rating structure in motor and this had enabled it to return to broker panels.

"We are now re-entering with tightened eligibility criteria and significantly increased rating sophistication including a number of new rating factors.

"Joining the Hastings motor panel is the latest in this programme of re-entry."

He added: "We have a new level of granularity [in rating], which will help us to develop where we are more competitive.

"We put in improvements in April and May in More Th>n and intermediary business.

"We will add a greater level of sophistication in the fourth quarter of 2005."

Brown said the insurer was now looking at other panels to join.

The insurer had previously withdrawn from all panels save for those run by the AA, Kwik-Fit and Cox, owing to "profitability issues".

"The launch of a new product in 1998 caused profitability issues through poor performance across its motor portfolio but particularly with respect to young drivers."