Motorists remain unsure about whether to trust driverless cars

12th November 2014

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Half of UK motorists say they would trust a driverless car to park for them, but only a third would put their faith in the vehicles to spot hazards on the road.

Driverless cars are likely to be tested on UK roads within months, according to esure, which carried out the survey, but motorists remain unsure about how much trust to place in the technology.

While 49% would trust driverless cars to indicate and 46% would trust them to reverse safely, 51% would not trust these vehicles to perceive hazards, 49% would not trust them to fill up with fuel and 45% would not trust them to brake effectively.

Younger motorists aged 18 to 34 were more likely to trust a computer to perform driving functions. Sixty per cent would trust it to park and indicate on their behalf, followed by 57% who would be happy to let a driverless car reverse for them.

Men were more likely than women to trust driverless cars to perform various driving elements for them and Londoners came highest in terms of trust in the regional stakes followed by Wales.

Andrew Lowe, head of motor at esure said: “The results present some interesting findings about the acceptance of technologies that already exist on UK roads. For example, parking assistance technology and reversing sensors are currently available in cars and there was a far greater trust level for driverless cars performing the function of parking and reversing.”

“It remains to be seen whether the distrust for some driving elements are because people haven’t experienced them before and if this will change as soon as drivers become familiar with them.”

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