Planning For Self-Driving Cars Vs. Making Money From Them

Autonomous vehicles have been on drawing boards and in on-road testing for some time now.

However, as the technology continues develop, various viewpoints relating to planning and market reality are emerging.

The mayor of Pittsburgh, William Peduto, issued an executive order detailing expectations for the testing of self-driving cars in that city.

Called the Pittsburgh Principles, believed to be a first if its kind for a city, the order sets the Pittsburgh Department of Mobility and Infrastructure as the lead oversight body, calling for the department to publish guidelines for testing autonomous vehicles on public streets.

Among the directives in the order, the department is to develop and publish policy recommendations that “fundamentally protect and enhance walking, public transit and travel by bicycle as preferred modes of travel in highly urbanized areas” and “minimize the consequences and maximize the benefits of technological disruption on city finances, delivery of city services and maintenance and operation of public streets and rights of way.”

On the other side of the planning coin, a top auto executive is suggesting that self-driving cars are nowhere near a money-making business.

Answering a question at a press conference discussing the earnings of German auto supplier Continental AG this week, its chief executive Elmar Degenhart said: "Until 2030, the market will be driven mainly by assistance systems. Significant revenues will only come in 2030 and thereafter."

The self-driving vehicles being tested typically are intended for ride-sharing use somewhere down the road. Main topics of discussion never include the idea of consumers buying a self-driving car.

The bigger elephant never discussed is what one of these vehicles might cost.

7 comments about "Planning For Self-Driving Cars Vs. Making Money From Them".
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  1. R MARK REASBECK from www.USAonly.US , March 10, 2019 at 10:01 p.m.

    The bigger elephant never discussed is what one of these vehicles might cost.

    thank you Chuck.  they will find out there is no market for consumers.  the "commercial" market is a joke because, any way we have now to move product/people is efficient and doesn't cost billions of dollars to eliminate a driver's job.

    More and more companies will bail on this because ...........THEY ARE IN BUSINNESS TO MAKE MONEY.   Auto-tonomous vehicles will bleed them dry. 
    I still say it adds $17-22,000 per car.  Plus you have to have a whole bunch of servers and back-up to move the car 10 feet. 

    D.O.A.   Otto Tonomous  R.I.P.

  2. Chuck Martin from Chuck Martin, March 11, 2019 at 10:01 a.m.

    Yes, Mark, the move to autonomy is quite complex.

  3. Ken Kurtz from creative license replied, March 11, 2019 at 12:17 p.m.

    Complex, and dumbass. There are three reasons why self-driving cras would be a compete and utter FAIL.

    1) Everything we've traditionally loved about cars, from the very beginning, has been the feeling of freedom, and independence that comes with slipping behind the wheel of one, putting our hands on the wheel, and DRIVING. It's the drive-ability, stupid. I'm knee deep in  a new car purchase now, and have decided on a manual transmission because of the increased fun factor, and DRIVE-ABILITY.

    2) Too expensive.

    3) Too dangerous. I crack up when I hear people "imagine" how many fewer car crashes there will be with self-driving cars. Hilarious. Those self-driving cars are already striking, and killing pedestrians in crosswalks. And not for nothing, that damn "brand new" Boeing 737 MAX 8 that crashed yesterday, killing all on board, is renowned for bringing THE LATEST TECHNOLOGY to the most popular jet aircraft in history. Boeing has been touting the new engine technology in the MAX 8, as well as its overall technological offerings, for "redefining the future of efficient, environmentally friendly air travel."

    With two crashes of this "latest, and greatest" aircraft within months of each other, with all dying because the damn technology wouldn't allow the planes to get off the ground at proper air speed, I'm thinking we'll be better off going more "Orville and Wilbur." And "Henry Ford."

  4. Chuck Martin from Chuck Martin, March 11, 2019 at 1:11 p.m.

    Points well taken, Kenny. Many in the industry are starting to see that the task is much more complex than originally thought.

  5. Ken Kurtz from creative license replied, March 11, 2019 at 3:20 p.m.

    Again with the "complexity?"

    That the "industry" exists, and is only now capable of seeing how dumbass the idea was in the first place (regardless of whether "the task" was simple, or complex) is the primary problem. Everything the "industry" stands for, has touted, and has produced AND SOLD has only made people dumber, and less capable of connecting, really connecting meaningfully, effectively, and efficiently absent the crap the industry continues to advocate for... 

  6. R MARK REASBECK from www.USAonly.US , March 11, 2019 at 8:09 p.m.

    GO KENNY !!!!!!!!!
    You're one of the ones who "Get it"
    I've been against this  since the beginning.
    My simple mInd explanation is  I lose Sirius radio 10 times on the way to work, how can you distribute millions of bits of info to millions of vehicles moving a millions miles a minute?
    NEVER would I entrust my gas and brake pedal to a cluster of plastic curcuit boards.
    I continue to say, "DUMBEST IDEA OF THE 21st CENTURY"
    mY PREDICTION;  Fly over America (majority of population) will have nothing to do with this.  The billions of $$$$ wasted on development will come down to pizza and grocery delivery  (Gro-carts) and they will drop like flies  fighting over getting Domino's or Kroger.
    Kenny, I have 3 vehicles with stick shift, "Real cars have clutches"  . 

  7. Chuck Martin from Chuck Martin replied, March 11, 2019 at 9:38 p.m.

    So guessing you guys are not yet up for flying cars, now on the drawing boards?

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