Autonomous vehicles will dramatically change the design of a city making it more livable.


Fully connected self-driving vehicles are no longer a distant dream. The features and functions are being developed today by automakers and they are planning to market them soon. Once the masses adopt the Autonomous Vehicle, the impact on the landscape, society and our lives may be as transforming.  


The world was impacted significantly after the invention of the Automobile about 100 years ago - when we went from horse-and-buggy to motorized vehicle. Nobody could have imaged then how society would be shaped today. The same holds true for the invention of the Autonomous Vehicle.


The immediate benefits that are evident are namely: the physically challenged, elderly, visually-impaired becoming fully mobile; professionals enhancing productivity by working during commutes; a doctor assessing reports on the vehicle dashboard and sending important instructions for a surgery en route to the hospital; parents sending children to school or picking them up from school; all enabled by self-driving vehicles.


Most profoundly, autonomous technology may save thousands of lives by making decisions on the road faster than humans are able. Self-driving technology has a huge potential to bring about zero accidents and reduce congestion.


The changes that autonomous vehicles will bring to society can be classified in 4 areas – Housing, Lifestyle, Business models and Infrastructure. The type of changes can be evaluated by two aspects - Physical and Digital. 


Car sharing will spread more rapidly as automation of driving is perfected as well. Automotive OEMs will embrace autonomy in vehicles while transforming themselves to transportation services companies. Today, the main reasons for purchasing a vehicle include the following:


  • Appearance
  • Performance
  • Safety
  • Personal Affinity toward Brand


But, as vehicles become capable of driving autonomously, the way a car responds to its surroundings will become more relevant. This depends largely on the learning algorithms in the car and its capability to share information with other vehicles and infrastructure around it. Automotive OEMs will improve their data processing and analysis capabilities to communicate with its fleet of vehicles, monitor their surroundings and analyze every square millimeter of the road. OEMs with the most efficient Vehicle-to-Everything (V2X) communication will achieve the greatest opportunity to capture market share of personal and mass transit vehicles. 


To learn more about how autonomous vehicles are predicted to transform society and how OEMs can gear up for the change, check out our new Infographic on “Changing the shape of society with autonomous vehicles."