Survey says: Drivers don’t want autonomous cars

Autonomous cars may be the future, but they might not be what consumers want, a new survey says.

Sourced through from:

I think it can be taken as read that we all want safer cars. Hands up anyone who hasn’t been in a crash or been impacted by a crash. I didn’t think so.

I enjoy driving, but I also enjoy being able to slam on my brakes and know how my car will behave. I am a lot safer in my 7 year old car than the cars I drove in my youth. Anyone remember having to pump the brakes?My first defensive driving courses were about how to manage despite the car, now it is more about buying cars that understand the conditions at a speed much faster than a human’s hand-eye coordination.

I love the systems such as from Mercedes, where cameras monitor your eyes to see if you are falling asleep, a system that gently nudges the steering wheel to see if you actually intended crossing the centre median so that you can continue the manoevre if you need to.

We have been indoctrinated since birth that driving is fun and car ownership is something to aspire to. That doesn’t change overnight.

Statistics are interesting things, you can use them to form any argument you like and people do. If 18% of people polled said they liked the idea of an autonomous car, I would find that extremely exciting and encouraging.

I wonder if they used those pictures in the surveys. Would you want to sit with your magazine and coffee behind a steering wheel that is turning and are afraid to touch in case it thinks you want to take over? Of course not. The point of an autonomous car is that you have the space and confidence to relax and trust the vehicle. If you can’t then we are not ready to let them on the road.

In the meantime we are approaching the problem from both directions. Intelligent Transport Systems provide new features that improve safety, intelligence and performance, components that will evolve into driverless cars and at the other end the genuine article.

As in previous blogs there is a lot of water to go under the bridge before our roads and technology intersect, such that we can let anyone loose in a driverless car. But it will happen.

Travel demand experts say that in order to achieve significant benefits, we actually only need a small number of people to adopt new technologies. TomTom research said that if 5% of people used real time traffic information a significantly higher percentage of people would be better off. We also know that if 100% of people took an alternate route to avoid congestion, all we would do is move the problem, or create more problems.

I remember reading about the fear and trepidation from people about the introduction of the train (“they’ll never get it started” and “they’ll never be able to stop it”, of the Model A, the aircraft, of pretty much every major transport innovation that has changed the way we move around the world.

If more surveys came along with a similar number, rather than being discouraged, I would be investing in the leaders in this industry. Don’t you wish you had invested in some of those idiotic inventions like smartphones and PC’s? It wasn’t long ago that people were still saying that Facebook would never have a viable business model.

The future is coming, will you be on board?

See on Scoop.itLocation Is Everywhere

About Luigi Cappel

Writer for hire, marketing consultant specialising in Location Based Services. Futurist and Public Speaker Auckland, New Zealand
This entry was posted in Autonomous cars, Driverless car and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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