Despite very real projects by search engine Google and automobile manufacturers including Elon Musk’s Tesla, it’s hard to believe that self-driving cars will ever be feasible. But they are, and may be closer than you think.
including Cape Town and Johannesburg. The future Uber, and others like it, are working towards, however, removes the human driver from the equation. Instead, cars are regarded as shared infrastructure. They drive themselves and use complex algorithms to optimise traffic f low.
As Gartner notes in its research, the societal changes will be profound.
According to a June 2014 Gartner survey of over 6 000 consumers, twothirds of US and German vehicle owners are interested in purchasing a fully or partially autonomous vehicle the next time they shop for a vehicle.
Autonomous and driverless vehicles still have many obstacles to overcome before they meet all consumer, industry and legal requirements, but despite such challenges, the societal benefits from autonomous vehicles could outweigh potential disadvantages and concerns, notes the research paper.
“The evolution of the self-driving vehicle from automated to autonomous vehicles is already underway, and significant investments are being made by individual companies and the entire automotive industry to accelerate the pace of innovation and do actual prototyping on public roads,” said Gartner analyst Thilo Koslowski.
“We predict that by 2016, three companies will have announced concrete plans for upcoming automobile launches that will offer autonomous vehicle technology.”
By 2025, vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication will be available i n approximately 30% of passenger vehicles in use in mature markets, which will increase the reliability and accelerate the rollout of autonomous vehicles. By 2030, according to Gartner, vehicles capable of driving autonomously will represent approximately 25% of the passenger vehicle population in use in mature markets.