Victorian attitudes towards self-driving cars survey findings released

EastLink has announced the results of a survey of 15,000 Victorian on their attitudes towards self-driving cars.

The survey was conducted by EastLink in partnership with VicRoads, the Australian Road Research Board (ARRB), La Trobe University and RACV to identify opportunities to improve the compatibility between the latest self-driving car technologies and freeway infrastructure.

Cars have been provided by a wide range of manufacturers including Audi, BMW, Honda, Lexus, Mazda, Mercedes, Mitsubishi, Tesla and Volvo.

EastLink spokesperson, Doug Spencer-Roy, said EastLink’s Annual Victorian Self-Driving Vehicle Survey is helping Victorian motorists by ensuring that road operators and car manufacturers better understand motorists’ needs in relation to self-driving cars.

“EastLink’s survey shows that more than half of respondents are no longer considering a traditional petrol combustion engine for their next car. That’s a massive change from traffic on our roads today, where the large majority of cars are powered by traditional petrol combustion engines,” Mr Spencer-Roy said.

“More than half of respondents say they want lane keeping assistance in their next car. The trials of self-driving car technologies on EastLink are helping to ensure this feature works effectively on Victorian freeways. We encourage all manufacturers to take part.

“EastLink’s survey shows that a majority of respondents want their next car to be connected to a data network to receive traffic and road condition warnings, vehicle security and automatic emergency assistance. With assistance from road operators, telecommunication providers and others, car manufacturers can deliver useful services to improve road safety and help motorists navigate congestion better.

“Through the trials of self-driving car technologies on EastLink and the Annual Victorian Self-Driving Vehicle Survey, EastLink is preparing for hands-free driving.”

Key survey results include:

  • More than half of respondents are no longer considering a traditional petrol combustion engine for their next car
  • A third of respondents are now considering hybrid power as an option for their next car
  • A quarter are considering the 100 per cent battery electric vehicle option
  • The majority of respondents say they have very little or no knowledge of self-driving cars
  • More and better information about self-driving cars needs to be provided to Victorian motorists
  • More than half of respondents want lane keeping assistance (also known as highway autopilot) in their next car, which should encourage manufacturers to continue to roll out this feature and ensure it works effectively on freeways
  • Even though hands-free driving on freeways is not yet available, one in three respondents already want this feature in their next car
  • The majority of respondents want their next car to be connected to a data network to receive traffic and road condition warnings, vehicle security and automatic emergency assistance
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