Social Update: Automatic Cars and the Vision of Tesla's Future



Companies around the country and the world are continuously working to provide new benefits and advancements that can both create a more efficient society while subsequently progressing the current technology that is used by countries. Recent technological trends, including the increasing popularity of virtual reality, the quest for Mars in part led by Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla and even autonomous driving have become more prominent in recent times. 

While the current trend for cars in terms of technological advancement centers on finding alternative fuel sources instead of gasoline, others see an even brighter future for cars as the years go by. According to Rethinkx, who conducted a study and published findings based on their research into the future of autonomous driving concluded that by 2030, 95% of miles driven will be without a human manning the wheel. This may sound ludicrous, as the idea of being driven around by a vehicle seems light years away, but many people are continuing to think that this advancement is coming in the near future.

This concept of autonomous vehicle is accompanied by a growing push for more efficient driving and more cost and fuel-efficient driving. Both companies and consumers want this for their vehicles and as CEOs work harder and harder to find ways to make more effective cars, consumers will be able to save money. Transportation costs would decrease; driving would become more efficient as autonomous vehicles could expedite routes. They could be able to take the quickest route and with other unmanned vehicles on the road, the cars could operate in much closer quarters with much less danger of accident.

With this concept growing, people are pushing for it due to its ability to reduce costs, time spent on the road, accidents, and fuel used. Trending recently, especially with the aforementioned Elon Musk, is the rise of fuel-efficient cars - especially those that do not need fossil fuels. Tesla cars are completely electric but are unique in that they are sold at comfortable prices so that the everyday consumer can drive a fuel-efficient car. While Musk works with Tesla and sets goals for even bigger advancements with cars and focuses on his journey to Mars, the idea of autonomous driving will accompany many of the advancements he is working on.

Another benefit of the concept of autonomous driving, as stated in the Rethinkx Executive Summary, is the amount of time drivers and passengers would be given to do other, more useful activities instead of spending time behind the wheel of a vehicle. The summary expects that by 2030, the number of miles driven should be reduced from 247 million to 44 million, and demand for vehicles will also go down. The summary expects there to be 70% fewer passenger cars produced, accompanied by a large increase in the number of ride sharing and transportation as a service, or called TaaS by Rethinkx.

This market for transportation as a service could open up an entirely new highly competitive market as more people abandon purchasing cars and turn to being driven from destination to destination. These transportation services would also, as mentioned above, would lead to a reduction in the amount of time spent on roads, the amount of fuel emitted into the atmosphere, and less accidents. Autonomous cars would have no need for sudden lane changes or the tendencies of forgetting an upcoming turn before having to swing across traffic, risking injury with unstable driving. Autonomous driving would take away these dangers while bringing plenty of other upside along with it.

Specifically for environmental benefits, the summary expects that by 2030, there could be the possibility for an entirely carbon-free road transportation and there could be large decreases in energy demand for vehicles and tailpipe emissions in general.

Socially, the transportation costs could diminish greatly, leading to more people being able to reach better education and jobs because there would be less need for a worker to own their own vehicle. Their rides there would be faster and more efficient than they would ever be if the worker was driving themselves there. These cars could also increase access to better healthcare, food, entertainment and other services and benefits that society has to offer that people sometimes aren’t able to reach because of limitations to their transportation.

As advancements continue to pile up in the industry of vehicle production and more fuel-efficient cars that are less reliant on fossil fuels are made available to the public, other advancements will continue to be made. Solar energy cars and other non-gasoline fueled cars are becoming more common and as they do, advancements like autonomous vehicles could completely change the vehicle industry. Cost-effective and gasoline-free driving would completely disrupt not only the environment, but also society as a new industry of transportation services rises up and the oil companies grapple with new struggles to advance in their own industry.