Driverless cars – how will they affect me?

Driverless cars – how will they affect me?

Posted by

Martin Brown

February 2015

All this talk of driverless cars being tested on UK roads has got me thinking – as a driver, how will their introduction affect me?

Imagine a world without crashes, congestion and road rage – heaven, right?

But as an enthusiast, like the 350 million or so fans that watch Top Gear, I do wonder even if the option was there, whether I’d ever choose to give up control of my own car.

I know I’d certainly miss the satisfaction of pushing the accelerator hard, plus the thrill of the open road. Then there’s the question of trust – do I have enough faith in the technology to let my car drive itself?

Selfishly, the only time I think it would certainly be great for me, is after a big night out, when a driverless car would remove the need to worry about the law and who’s driving home!

News that the Government is to allow the testing of driverless cars on UK roads is big news.

Okay, so the announcement that the Government is to allow the testing of driverless cars on UK roads is big news. However, the idea of driverless cars is nothing new – even if before it was more science fiction than reality. Remember Kitt, David Hasslehoff and Knight Rider anyone?

So, if the technology is available, why is there not more support for self-driving cars? Surely self-driving cars would be cheaper, more-efficient and safer?

Well, there’s still plenty of issues to be ironed out – hence the reason for the testing on UK roads. The thought of the computer in control of your driverless car going wrong  at 70+mph doesn’t even bear thinking about.

Plus, I wonder if there’s a network strong enough to support all the computers controlling these cars.

Car manufacturers are aware of these points too, surely dragging their feet, as they wouldn’t be able to sell the driving experience.  Turning the car into white goods, would surely make them less attractive and consequently cut sales.

Until these questions are answered, I’m more than happy to have control of my steering wheel, accelerator, brake and clutch pedals.


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