The Evolution of Autonomous Vehicles
Technological, Economic & Societal Impact
Key Industries Impacted: Consumer Products & Services; Auto Manufacturing; Government; Financial Services; Technology, Media & Communications
Research today predicts that by 2050 owning a smart autonomous vehicle will become the norm for consumers. The first big leap in introducing autonomous vehicles to the consumer market is expected in 2017 from Google, whose self-driving technology now costs a tenth of its original $80,000 price tag. Every major automotive manufacturer will likely follow by the early 2020s. Many of the key pieces of technology necessary for the manufacturing of autonomous vehicles are continuing to decrease in cost as the technology is perfected. And while the price of a self-driving car is still outside the price range of most consumers, investor interest continues to increase.
According to a University of Texas report, if 90 per cent of the cars on roads in the United States were replaced by autonomous vehicles, the savings across various industries, such as automakers, insurers and the government, could reach as high as $450 billion. This would be a huge incentive for policymakers to clear the way for self-driving cars in the future. The full adoption of autonomous vehicles will likely take decades, but the anticipated safety, economy and convenience will no doubt help speed up the process.