They’re not here yet but everyone even remotely related to the autonomous vehicle drive will tell you they will soon revolutionize the automotive industry and possibly our loves as well.
And the automotive industry has been great at having races – either among themselves or today between their traditional view of the industry and the technology companies that seek to revolutionize the future of human mobility. Many are now asking – can Detroit’s finest, for example GM – reach the future in time. For example the Cadillac luxury brand will introduce the semi-autonomous Super Cruise feature around 2017. Meanwhile Elon Musk’s Tesla electric cars already have been updated over the air with the Autopilot feature that enables hands free driving on highways. Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi, Volvo, Toyota or Nissan also have similar systems in various stages of development. This is the traditional side of the fence though – all of them plan to progressively introduce more and more semi-autonomous features on new models until everyone gets culturally acquainted with the technology and its progress towards full autonomous driving.
And then there’s Google – that search giant – that has decided innovation requires a revolutionary approach – its own design for so-called bubble-shaped cars with two places will lack those usual accessories, mainly the steering wheel and pedals. If regulators allow it, the so-called Koala cars – already undergoing intensive testing around Silicon Valley – will come to the market just as traditional carmakers are still perfecting the semi-autonomous features and systems. And size is on its side – market capitalization of $495 billion means it’s around triple in size the combined Detroit automakers.