Nearly three-quarters of Americans are afraid to ride in self-driving cars, according to the latest survey by the American Automobile Association. There is bad news ahead for the many automobile and technology companies currently developing, and road-testing, self-driving cars: many people are too frightened to ride in driverless vehicles. The American Automobile Association (AAA) May consumer trust survey on autonomous vehicles (AVs) found that 73% of U.S. citizens now fear traveling in an AV, compared with 63% just six months before. In addition, the survey found that two-thirds of millennials--a supposedly tech-loving generation--are also too fearful to ride in self-driving cars. The AAA even has unwelcome news from pedestrians and cyclists, with nearly two-thirds saying they don't trust AVs enough to use roads and sidewalks alongside them.
Sergey Brin knows a little about ground-breaking technology. But when the Google co-founder said in 2012 that we could'count on one hand' the number of years it'd take for'most of us to have access to autonomous cars', it still sounded a bold prediction. So more than eight years on, where do we find ourselves? Autonomous or'self-drive' cars are already on the road in the US, while on this side of the pond, the Government is consulting on allowing self-drive vehicles to travel on public motorways at up to 70mph from as early as spring next year. However, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) and Thatcham Research, an independent motoring body funded by the insurance industry, has pushed back warning that if systems were defined legally as'automated' (meaning drivers can take their hands off the steering wheel), it would pose a major risk to safety on the roads.
Suppose a driverless car is headed towards five pedestrians - it can stay on course and kill them or swerve into a concrete wall, killing its passenger. This ethical dilemma is a difficult one - and it appears that people cannot decide which outcome is better. New research shows that people generally approve of cars programmed to sacrifice their passengers to save others, but these same people would not want to be in the car themselves. Autonomous vehicles (AVs), have the potential to benefit the world by eliminating up to 90 per cent of traffic accidents. However, not all crashes will be avoided, and some crash scenarios will require AVs to make difficult ethical decisions.
Because of self-driving, KPMG predicts that auto insurance will shrink 60% by 2050 and an additional 10% over the following decade. While more than half of individuals surveyed by Pew Research express worry over the trend toward autonomous vehicles, and only 11% are very enthusiastic about a future of self-driving cars, lack of positive consumer sentiment hasn't stopped several industries from steering into the auto pilot lane. The general sentiment of proponents, such as Tesla and Volvo, is that consumers will flock toward driverless transportation once they understand the associated safety and time-saving benefits. Because of the self-driving trend, KPMG currently predicts that the auto insurance market will shrink 60% by the year 2050 and an additional 10% over the following decade. What this means for P&C insurers is change in the years ahead. A decline in individual drivers would directly correlate to a reduction in demand for the industry's largest segment of coverage.
CARMAKERS like to talk about autonomous vehicles (AVs) as if they will be in showrooms in three or four years' time. The rosy picture they paint suggests people will soon be whisked from place to place by road-going robots, with little input from those on board. AVs will end the drudgery of driving, people are told. With their lightning reactions, tireless attention to traffic, better all-round vision and respect for the law, AVs will be safer drivers than most motorists. They won't get tired, drunk, have fits of road rage, or become distracted by texting, chatting, eating or fiddling with the entertainment system.