Consumers Not Confident in Self-Driving Cars Yet: Study

Consumers Not Confident in Self-Driving Cars Yet: Study

People still aren’t ready to accept self-driving cars, according to a new study. 

Researchers Brandon Schoettle and Michael Sivak from the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute recently conducted a study to determine the general public’s opinion on self-driving cars and whether autonomous features are even welcomed by motorists. A total of 505 respondents over the age of 18 completed full surveys with 52.9 percent of respondents being female.

When asked about acceptable levels of vehicle automation, 43.8 percent of respondents said they preferred no self-driving features while 40.6 percent said they’d prefer partially self-driving features. Completely self-driving vehicles were the least preferred, with only 15.6 percent choosing the option. The statistic carried over to how concerned a person would be with riding in a self-driving car, with 35.6 percent of those surveyed saying they’d be very concerned. Only 10.9 percent of the respondents chose not at all concerned.

SEE ALSO: Women Not Sold On Safety of Self-Driving Cars

As for Google’s wish of getting rid of the steering wheel and pedals, it might not sit well with vehicle buyers. Of those surveyed, 96.2 percent said they’d want to have a steering wheel plus gas and brake pedals available even if their vehicles were self-driving.

This is the second year the study has been conducted, and the levels of concern for riding in completely self-driving vehicles stayed relatively consistent. For example, last year’s survey had 35.9 percent of respondents saying they’d be very concerned while this year was 35.6 percent. As for inputting a route or destination, users preferred touchscreens (37.8 percent) over voice commands (36.2 percent) while most respondents (59.4 percent) prefer to be notified of a need to take control of a partially self-driving vehicle with a combination of sound, vibration and visual warnings.

  • craigcole

    I’m not confident in autonomous cars and I cover this business every day. It’s no wonder consumers are wary.

  • Transpower

    What if the system fails??? Obviously there must still be pedals and a steering wheel, etc.!

  • Houses-of-the-Holy

    There are hurdles and unintended consequences, not the least of which is liability.
    Let’s see what self driving cars won’t do.
    They won’t tailgate, speed, pass when unsafe, run stop signs, run red lights, drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol, eat breakfast with coffee driving with their knees while watching a movie on their tablet and texting.
    There is one overriding fact that can’t be denied, over 90% of accidents are caused by people.
    To eliminate most accidents, remove the cause. Once liability issues have been resolved, only the rich will be able to afford the insurance. The under 25’s have a different attitude to driving and in 25-30 years, they will be the decision makers. Within 25-30 years, knowing how to drive a car will be as useful as knowing how to ride a horse is now.
    PS – The Tesla S was introduced in 2012. 3 years later, one can drive from Seattle to LA to Miami to New York and back to Seattle for free. In 3 years, that is quite an achievement.