Not too long ago it seemed like something out of a science fiction novel: cars that drive themselves. Some of us grew up with cars like Knight Rider on TV or in movies, but I don’t think many of us saw it coming this quickly. Think about it: cars that drive themselves. Self driving cars.
And yet, they’re here. They have been for years, and they’re not going anywhere soon. IHS Automotive Consulting reports that there will be 21 million autonomous vehicles on the road by 2031, which is a substantial increase from previous estimates.
Google has been working on self driving cars for years, Tesla has automated features, and it seems like most other car manufacturers are getting in on the game too. Even the trucking industry is going automated, with the first fully automated fleet recently traveling across Europe. So what does this mean for the fleet industry as a whole?
For starters, there’s no need to panic just yet. 21 million self driving cars may sound like a lot, but keep in mind that about that many are sold each year in the United States alone and this is a 15 year estimate. 15 years is a lot of time to reach a relatively low number of units, so there’s probably another 10 or 15 years before seeing self driving cars (and trucks) on the road becomes an every day occurrence.
This means you and your business have about 25 – 30 years to adjust to automated vehicles, which should be plenty of time.
According to the report, the United States will lead the way in both development and adaptation of automated vehicles which could even reignite the spark of the U.S. auto industry. From there, it is expected China will enter the market a little bit behind the U.S. but make up for it by accounting for almost 25% of the global self driving car market. Western Europe & Japan will be next enter the stage in a meaningful way, as both markets vie for competitive footholds over the American auto market.
You can read the full report here:
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