A majority of buyers may want to put the brakes on driverless cars

google driverless car project report may2016 googles lexus rx 450h self driving 930x749  wikipedia
Wikipedia
At a time when it seems many groups are enthusiastically pushing for driverless cars, an important one is not so sure.

Car companies, tech companies, insurance companies, and government agencies seemingly can’t say enough about how driverless cars will reduce accidents, save money, and result in more efficient transport. The promise is autonomous cars will get us there faster, safer, and cheaper. Consumers who responded to a recent University of Michigan driverless car survey, however, aren’t buying it. For the most part, consumers aren’t interested in totally driverless cars and close to half would just as soon forget about such technology entirely, according to Reuters.

Perhaps it’s the vaunted 100-plus year American love affair with the automobile or maybe people don’t trust technology. “The most frequent preference for vehicle automation continues to be for no self-driving capability,” said the study’s authors, Brandon Schoettle and Michael Sivak.

The survey released this week follows an earlier survey the University of Michigan conducted in July 2015. The results are about the same. In the more recent polling, 46 percent preferred cars with no self-driving capability, 39 percent favored partial self-driving features, and only 15 percent wanted totally driverless cars. In the earlier survey, when asked about the extent of driverless features preferred, the numbers were 43.8 percent in support of none, 40.6 percent favoring partial, and 15.6 percent in favor of totally driverless features. There’s very little change between the surveys that were taken 10 months apart and, significantly, during a time when driverless cars have been in the news often.

Another factor that drew similar responses in the two Michigan surveys is the almost unanimous preference for cars that have steering wheels, gas pedals, and brakes. Even for those who are in favor of totally self-driving cars want to be able to take over and control the direction and speed of the car. In the F

Fear is also a factor. In a AAA  survey published in March 2016, three-quarters of those surveyed stated they felt too afraid to ride in a self-driving car.

The forces of change in favor of driverless vehicles may be impossible to stop, but it seems unlikely consumers are going to get on board anytime soon. Lacking personal experience in autonomous cars or testimonials from those they trust, most people are likely to continue to doubt.

Cars

Lyft has a new fixed-price subscription plan for frequent passengers

Lyft wants you to save money by using rideshare services instead of owning a car. The new Lyft All-Access Plan monthly rideshare trip subscription includes 30 rides a month with a small discount for additional trips.
Cars

Bored with stock? The best tuner cars are begging to be modified

Modification has been around almost as long as the automobile itself. Here are 25 of the best tuner cars you can find, ranging from American muscle standouts to Japanese drift cars.
Cars

Hold on to your butts: These are the fastest cars in the world

Think your car is unbelievably fast? Think again. From wind-cheating bodywork to powerful engines, these cars were designed for the singular pursuit of speed (and it shows).
Outdoors

Sleep comfortably under the stars in one of the best tents

An essential piece of gear whether you're camping in your backyard or on a multi-day backpacking trip, here are our picks of the best tents currently on the market from car camping varieties to the best three-person option.
Cars

At 503 mph, Turbinator II is the world’s fastest wheel-driven vehicle

The Turbinator II is a four-wheel drive streamliner powered by a 5,000-horsepower helicopter engine, and it just achieved 503.332 mph at the Bonneville Salt Flats. That's an unofficial record for a wheel-driven car.
Cars

Could the next Mazda3 boast a fuel-saving breakthrough in engine tech?

Mazda released a teaser video that likely previews the next Mazda3. Expected to make its global debut at the L.A. auto show, the next 3 will wear a more curvaceous design and offer one of the most advanced engines in the automotive…
Product Review

Audi's new A8 is so sophisticated and serene, it practically deletes potholes

The 2019 Audi A8’s outline looks promising: Level 3 autonomous driving capability, haptic-feedback infotainment screens, rear-wheel steering, Matrix LED headlights and OLED taillights, plus a predictive suspension.
Cars

Workhorse takes on diesel with lighter, cheaper NGEN-1000 electric delivery van

Ohio-based Workhorse Group claims its new NGEN-1000 electric delivery van costs the same as a conventional diesel van and can haul a similar amount of cargo. A lower curb weight makes this possible.
Cars

Forget transponders with Peasy’s nationwide pay-as-you-go toll service

Verra Mobility launched Peasy, a consumer highway and bridge toll payment service. Designed to be less hassle than managing traditional transponder or toll tag accounts, Peasy pays tolls as they are levied across most of the U.S.
Cars

Just 10 people will get to put this limited-edition Audi R8 in their garages

The 2018 Audi R8 V10 Plus Competition makes use of Audi's motor sports experience to turn up the performance dial. Decreased weight and increased aerodynamic downforce make this R8 a track monster.
Cars

Porsche’s all-electric Taycan sedan will cost less than a Panamera

Porsche's Mission E concept won't change much as it transitions to a production model named Taycan that's scheduled to arrive in 2019. That means the sedan will keep the sleek design and its 800-volt charging system.
Cars

Tesla keeps promise with more affordable Model 3 with midrange battery pack

Tesla is keeping its promise of making the Model 3 gradually more affordable. The company released a new variant of the car with a mid-range, 260-mile battery option that's priced under the $50,000 mark.
Cars

The snake escapes: Ford’s 700-hp Mustang GT500 slithers online ahead of schedule

The Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 will return in 2019 with over 700 horsepower, Ford confirmed at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show. The GT500 will be the most powerful Ford production car ever.
Cars

Volvo plans to face the future without sacrificing its identity

Volvo is embarking on an ambitious push to fill its lineup with electric and hybrid cars, as well as an infotainment partnership with Google. Volvo Americas CEO Anders Gustafsson explains how the Swedish automaker plans to pull that off.