Majority of consumers would welcome self-driving cars, study finds
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A majority of consumers have a positive attitude toward self-driving cars, and are awaiting their introduction with “anticipation,” a survey by the consulting group Capgemini has found.
The survey, of more than 5,500 consumers worldwide and 280 automotive executives, seeks to understand consumer expectations and how automakers are responding to them. Among its findings: consumers trust established automakers more than startups to offer safe and reliable self-driving cars, and they are more optimistic than auto executives about overcoming the challenges and barriers to autonomous driving.
“It’s not just safety and the technical aspects of autonomous cars that will determine their adoption rate — it’s also the consumer experience,” Markus Winkler, the director of the global automotive sector at Capgemini, said in an interview.
Winkler said that engineers and researchers needed to work hand-in-hand with marketers and user-experience experts to create self-driving cars that serve customers’ needs. “The consumer has to be brought back into the boat of this discussion,” he said. “They expect to be safely transported, but they also expect the convenience and the customer experience that autonomous driving is promising them.”
According to the survey, among those expectations are that self-driving cars will save time — around six and a half hours a week, which 63 per cent said they would use to socialize with friends or family in the vehicle, either online or face to face. (Forty-five per cent said they would use the time to catch up on their sleep.)