How the rise of autonomous vehicles will transform the relationship between man and car
Who's in the driving seat?
Are we ready for driverless cars?
It is rather surprising how receptive people are to the subject of autonomous driving even though almost nobody has actually experienced it to date. This was confirmed by an EY survey of 1,000 drivers in Germany: more than 4 in 10 could imagine letting an autopilot steer their car. The proportion increased to 66% if they were given the added option of taking over the wheel in an emergency. Only 12% would categorically refuse to use a self-driving vehicle as a means of transport.
This vote of confidence is likely to become stronger over time. Three-quarters of drivers aged under 45 could imagine handing the steering wheel to a robot, while only half of those over 65 would consider this option.
The option to intervene is important
If we leave the technical and legal details of autonomous driving aside for a moment to focus on the real challenge posed by this subject — the interaction between man and car and therefore the wider man-machine relationship — the fundamental issue becomes clear. The question is not whether machines will replace people in the future and take away their work, thereby destroying jobs. Rather, the question is to what extent people are willing to entrust their lives to a machine.
Who’s in the driving seat?