There has not been a bigger shift in the transportation industry since the Model T replaced the horse and cart. The emerging breed of autonomous cars will change everything we know.
Here’s what to expect.
If you speak to any company in the auto industry they will tell you they’re planning for a for a future without ‘drivers’. It’s tough to imagine from where we are right now but I assure you it’s closer than you think.
Think self-driving cars and you immediately think of Tesla. This electric car company famously announced that all new cars shipped after October 2016, will have hardware capable of level 5 autonomy. This simply means the car can drive itself without any human input. I know this sounds like witchcraft and it’s not far off. Only this case, the witch’s are the engineers responsible.
Not convinced? Check out this video –
Navigation will change
As cars become smarter and input becomes minimal, the navigation will evolve into the core function of the vehicle.
Autonomous cars will be able to communicate with each other to accurately determine the best route for you. This could mean the fastest, shortest route or even the one with the cleanest air. The air filtration system in the Telsa is biological warfare grade, just in case 😉
All you will have to do in the not so distant future is input your destination and away you go, free to relax.
Possibly one of the most interesting applications of level 5 autonomy achievable by new Teslas is the ability to add your car to the fleet when not in use. Therefore, allowing your Telsa to earn you money back through ride-sharing.
Ride-sharing has gone from zero to one-hundred over the last few years with Uber and Lyft dominating the market. With $3.3 billion in revenue last year, it’s already a big industry and a competitive one at that. Apple recently invested in Didi Chuxing (Uber of China), Google is still testing autonomous cars with Waze Carpool and Toyota has invested in Getaround.
There are also smaller niche ridesharing services. For instance, See Jane Go is a female only service to ensure peace of mind.
So where does Tesla fit into this?
Let’s imagine you arrive at work and instead of letting your Tesla park itself, you add it to the fleet. Your Tesla has suddenly become an autonomous taxi, requestable by a member of the public. A simple button press on the Tesla app would trigger a car to turn up and take Mr Public where ever he or she wanted to go. It’ll even make sure it’s done in time to pick you up from work.
Pretty smooth (on paper).
Car ownership will become a thing of the past
Petrol heads look away now.
The CEO of Lyft John Zimmer thinks that if current autonomous car trends are anything to go by, car ownership will become a thing of the past. Car ownership is currently down, with millennials 30% less likely to purchase a car when compared with the previous generation.
Cars are going from being symbols of freedom to being a burden.
As I’m feeling bold, I’ll go as far to say that car ownership will be illegal by 2030.
The why behind that? It’s simple. Human error accounts for 94% of all crashes across the planet. With 1.3 million plus people dying each year on the roads removing the human from the equation will mean a lot more will live.
So far from the 250 million miles worth of data collected by Tesla cars. The data shows that autopilot is 40% safer than human drivers. Tough to argue against the data.
I don’t know about you but I’m getting my name down for the affordable Model 3.
Personally, I’d love to see fully autonomous cars on our roads but I’m not naive to the fact that it will put a lot of people instantly out of work.
Did you know the most common job in America is a Truck Driver?
What happens to them when Otto(Uber) makes them all redundant?
That’s a conversation for another day.