The British government has this week announced that driverless cars will be permitted on UK roads from the summer of 2015.
Transport minister Claire Perry wants the UK to become a leader in the autonomous car industry, an industry expected to be worth £900 billion by 2025. The first trials will take place in Greenwich, Milton Keynes, Coventry and Bristol, though it’s not clear upon what basis the government selected these venues. Expendability of landscape and pedestrians?
In the name of safety, Perry revealed, the first wave of autonomous cars will be required to carry a ‘reserve driver’ to take over in the event of system failure.
The UK isn’t alone in inviting driverless cars onto its highways. California, Florida and Nevada already permit testing of autonomous cars on public roads, with Japan and Sweden ramping up trials as well. The self-driving future is coming, and it’s coming quickly.
However, much as a future of autonomous cars gliding safely to their destinations as their owners slumber on the back seat might sound pleasingly utopian, Top Gear is worried. Petrified, even.
Here are eleven reasons to fear the rise of the driverless cars. Don’t say we didn’t warn you…