5 Questions You Have About Self Driving Cars Answered
The self driving car is no longer a sci-fi concept; they’re real and will likely cruise along a road near you. These vehicles, however, remain shrouded in mystery. You probably hear the occasional tidbit about self driving cars, perhaps seeing them in YouTube videos or news segments. But many questions regarding these futuristic rides linger in the minds of the public. You too may have some questions. Aside from the numerous speculations, rumours, and chatter taking place in the industry right now, it’s safe to say there are some questions held by general population, when discussing self driving cars.
Are Self Driving Cars Commercially Available?In short, yes. Rushing to a dealership showroom, though, will leave you feeling disappointed. Apart from the concept cars you've seen on T.V. or online, the only self driving vehicles available for commercial use are open-air shuttles with a top speed of 20.1 Km/h (12.5 miles per hour), with limited service to pedestrian zones. Demonstrations of autonomic cars on the road haven’t been staged, however, and what you've seen so far are prototypes. You just couldn't drive away in one (or sit back in one) at this time. With that said, the wait for these before is dwindling; approximately five years remain before self driving cars hit Canadian roads, and it will go by fast.
How Much Will a Self Driving Car Likely CostIf you’re bent on buying a self driving car, start saving now. The price tag of a self driving Toyota Prius - one driven by the visually-impaired Steve Mahan - sits at $325,000, a cost higher than a Ferrari 599. The assortment of visual and radar sensors, and GPS technology along with embedded software contribute to the tremendous cost. It’s hard to say what all self driving vehicles will amount to since features, car make and manufacturer will come into play. But you can bet most of these cars will start at inaccessible prices for the average consumer.
Who Are the Major Players/Brands Entering the Self Driving Market?Here’s where things get interesting. To say which auto brands are entering the market would understate the mass migration of companies looking to cash in on this movement. Sure, you’ve got the car brands that we've all come to know since childhood. But there’s a slew of companies who have no dealings with the auto industry, looking to put their own self driving vehicles on the road. Let’s take a look at some of them.
Non-Automotive Brands Developing Self Driving Cars
- Google - The most well-known example of a non-automotive company in the self driving market is Google. However, there entrance into the field isn't strange. Since they are a tech megagiant, one who happens to work with artificial intelligence (Google is pretty smart at AI), it makes sense that they would want to experiment with a self driving car. Google recently announced news that their latest prototype is fully functional.
- Apple - The next big tech monster, Apple, is apparently working on a self-driving car as well. But it’s vital to emphasize that this is speculation. So far, there have been reports of Apple employees working on an electric vehicle codenamed “Project Titan”, which many insiders have speculated to be the company’s attempt at a self driving car.
List of Car Brands Confirmed or Speculated to Release Self Driving Cars
- General Motors