In April 2014, the 1968 Vienna Convention was relaxed in allowing autonomous vehicles on the road so long as the system “can be overridden or switched off by a driver.” The law change will increasingly enable the testing of self-driving prototype vehicles in real driving conditions.
The Strategy Analytics Automotive Electronics Service (AES) report, “Autonomous Vehicles: Evolutionary Deployment – Revolutionary Outcome?” suggests that while the capability of these prototypes already exist, in reality there are still a number of issues that have to be overcome before they can enter the mass market.
These issues include:
— The current lack of high performance components needed to make the
autonomous driving system operable, such as data processing chips;
— The high cost of autonomous driving systems, due to complexity and
costly components, that will limit their appeal to consumers;
— The concerns consumers have for the reliability of the autonomous
driving system, given that system failure at highway speeds will likely
result in fatal collisions; and
— Legislation could seek to address concerns over reliability and place
onerous validation requirements and insurance liability on the
“As a result of these issues, the deployment of autonomous driving will actually be rolled out in stages – as an extension of ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance System) applications, but with increasing autonomy,” said Kevin Mak, Senior Analyst in the Automotive Electronics Service (AES) at Strategy Analytics. He added, “As high performance components become available, consumers will become more accustomed with ADAS, and economies of scale are generated from platform designs, then increasingly levels of autonomy will be deployed – starting with Traffic Jam Assist. New players to the industry will also provide the much-needed impetus for autonomous driving developments, such as Google and NVIDIA.”
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