Half of UK cars to be driverless by 2041

Half of UK cars to be driverless by 2041
Within 25 years’ time, half of the cars driven on UK roads will be driverless.

That is the predication of experts at Kia, which is marking the quarter-century anniversary of its presence in the UK marketplace.

In its report, Transformation: The Future of Driving, the South Korean manufacturing giant also predicts that the number of cars capable of communicating with one another, and their surroundings, will surpass 8 million.

Together with these “connected” cars, more and more traditional vehicles made available which possess increasing degrees of autonomy.

READ MORE: Driverless cars to communicate with road-users using emojis

Kia’s report makes some interesting forecasts on the infrastructure changes which will be needed to cater for the changing face of motoring.

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It expects a huge overhaul of the road network, as autonomous cars are granted dedicated motorway lanes.

There is also the very real possibility, Kia adds, that some future vehicles will have the capability to communicate with the roads they are travelling on. This will enable them to identify certain hazards, such as potholes, and also ascertain if any traffic delays lie ahead on their journey.

Other predicted benefits for UK transport by 2041 include the possibility that parking fines could be eradicated – while there is also hope from Kia that disabled people could benefit from the greater mobility provided by new cars.

As for the issue of insurance premiums, these could become obsolete as cars become able to avoid collisions and accidents through communication with each other.

Furthermore, an environmental boost should come in the form of lower omissions, and as a result of an increase in lift-sharing.

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Kia’s report was commissioned in conjunction with Dr Frank Shaw of the Kent-based Centre for Future Studies, a man hailed as one of the 10 most influential thinkers in the world by Time Magazine.

He said: “The future of the car industry is an exciting one, as there will be a transformation from an industry built by mechanics to one that is largely driven by software developers.

“I am confident, however, that over the next 25 years, the industry and technology companies will deliver a safer, more efficient and environmentally friendly driving experience for everyone.”

Copyright Press Association 2016. Motoring News articles do not reflect the RAC's views unless clearly stated.