Self-driving Vehicles: How Ready Is the Market?
Flying cars are still a dream project, but autonomous vehicles are not. That’s not all. Reports suggest that the market might be ready for them. However, the complexity of these machines demands the use of the right tools such as inertial simulation to guarantee the safety of the owners and pedestrians.
How Much the Consumers Are Willing to Pay
Contrary to popular belief, consumers are willing to pay a premium price. It’s just a matter of knowing the maximum they’re ready to shell out. When it comes to autonomous cars, it can be thousands of dollars.
A Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies study revealed that future buyers could spare as much as $5,000 for such highly advanced vehicle. The estimates can vary depending on the level of automation.
For instance, Americans might be willing to spend $3,500 for a partial type of automation. These can include levels 1 and 2 (the basis of which is according to the Society of Automotive Engineers scale). A favorite product of technology might be the Lane Assist. It allows drivers to stay in their correct lanes by sending alerts when they’re about to hit the lane mark.
Aptiv Incorporated (formerly Delphi Automotive PLC), meanwhile, is planning to reduce the price of self-driving vehicles by about 90%. It is equivalent to $5,000 less than its cost of acquisition today. The company cites the possibly high volume of orders and the further development of technology as the possible reasons for the lower price.
Keeping the Users and Pedestrians Safe
As car manufacturers continue to design and test autonomous vehicles, there’s a growing concern for safety. In 2015, Google confirmed the Waymo met about 12 collisions. In 2018, Uber’s self-driving test car hit a pedestrian, who eventually died.
These vehicles can have several limitations. Google’s, for example, might not be able to detect potholes. Those that rely heavily on GPS may be hard to track once they reach remote areas and tunnels. Before this product becomes mainstream, manufacturers need to conduct various safety tests. Equipment such as an inertial measurement unit can let them do simulations without being in the field.