Recent research from PA Consulting has indicated that despite a large amount of hype, autonomous vehicles are at least 10 years away from being widely used on UK roads. Whilst the information that they have uncovered indicates that autonomous technology itself is advancing our roads are not ready to support these changes. Developments would also need to be made in terms of insurance, compliance, etc.
PA consulting states that although manufacturers and the media talks positively about driverless cars and the uptake of them on a mass scale, the reality is there are a lot of changes that need to be made to deal with the numerous technological, legislative and confidence barriers that are present.
The government has recently launched “MERIDAN”, a government-backed and industry-led brand for the development of autonomous vehicles. This additional investment into autonomous vehicles will create testing facilities for driverless vehicles in the UK. PA consulting states that government involvement may act as a roadblock for allowing autonomous vehicles onto UK roads. Legislative requirements around the governments right to access data could affect the technology and a lack of usable technology will make security and connectivity hard to achieve thereby slowing the entire process down.
In a previous blog post, we mentioned that Lorry platooning had been trialled in the US and across Europe. Doubts have been raised in regards to lorry platooning on UK roads too due to the nature of our motorways. For both lorry platooning and driverless cars to be functional, our roads would have to undergo changes. PA suggests that the UK needs a clear national strategy showcasing how we would make the most out of autonomous vehicles. This strategy would need to include a framework of regulations for driverless and autonomous vehicles to co-exist and initiatives that will help boost confidence in autonomy.
What do you think about driverless vehicles? Remember we are summarising just one perspective on autonomous vehicles. Would you like to own one in the future? Comment your opinions.