Enjoy your car while it may last or should we say while it is available! Bob Lutz on Autonomous Cars
We all change with time and so will the automotive industry, which once used to rely on horses for transportation has been relying on human driven automobile for transportation for quite some time, but now is the time to for the same to evolve and end the human driven automobile transportation. Bob Lutz, the former vice chairman of product development for General Motors, wrote a missive in “Automotive News” that society is “approaching the end of the automotive era.”
Bob Lutz predicts that human driven cars to make way for autonomous cars and will eventually face the fate of horses, where they might be kept by the wealthy and at clubs as form of entertainment, but will disappear from highways.
“From a standpoint of moving human beings around the surface of the planet safely and efficiently, let’s face it: It’s the only way to go. Human beings just can’t handle it anymore.”
He told CNBC there would be a tipping point where federal regulators officially phase out human-driven cars based on their disproportionate contribution to accidents. He also added that automotive retailers should kiss the good times goodbye as future transportation will be “owned by the Ubers and Lyfts and God knows what other companies that will enter the transportation business in the future”. Performance will be the same for all and this would lead to death of companies like BMW, Mercedes and Audi.
Still, Lutz said, GM is one of the automakers that “gets it,” based on investments like Lyft and Maven. He expects GM will make other similar investments down the road. He also said he thinks smart car makers still have a shot at avoiding becoming the Nokia of transportation.
He predicts dealerships would ultimately vanish and even publications like Automotive News is doomed. Car and Driver is done; Road & Track is done. They’ll be replaced by a magazine called Battery and Module read by the big fleets. So, all those linked to human driven automobile would ultimately be doomed – The dealerships, repair facilities and even media surrounding it. All this is bound to happen in just 20 years.
Quoting from ‘Auto News’ – “The end state will be the fully autonomous module with no capability for the driver to exercise command. You will call for it, it will arrive at your location, you’ll get in, input your destination and go to the freeway. “