UK government to invest in driverless car development image

Great Britain chancellor George Osborne said the government would invest at least 10 million pounds to support driverless vehicle technology.

The UK government is aiming to leave Silicon Valley in its rear-view mirrors in an attempt to push the country to the forefront of one of the auto industry’s most competitive research areas.

Carmakers including Nissan and Daimler are racing against technology giants such as Google to develop cars that can drive without human intervention – a breakthrough that supporters say would improve safety and efficiency, and cut congestion.

“Driverless cars will become a reality and it is just a question of when, not if, ” said David Raistrick, UK automotive leader at Deloitte, a consultancy. “This is an obvious investment for the UK to make to remain at the top of the car industry.”

According to the chancellor’s Autumn Statement, the UK government will conduct a review, with conclusions published by the end of next year, of the necessary “legislative and regulatory framework” to support car companies’ development of driverless cars in Britain.

Next year, a prize fund of £10 million will be awarded to a town or city to develop a test site for the vehicles, the Treasury said.

Via Financial Times