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AAA Says Majority of People Fear Fully Self-Driving Vehicles

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The latest survey conducted by AAA regarding autonomous vehicles shows most drivers have shown fear (65%) or at least some type of uncertainty (25%) regarding fully self-driving vehicles. The organization says this type of fear has not decreased since spiking last year.


Though a majority of drivers fear self-driving vehicles, the interest in semi-autonomous technologies including Reverse Automatic Emergency Braking and Lane Keeping Assistance remain high towards motorists.

“There has been an increase in consumer fear over the past few years,” said Greg Brannon, Director of Automotive Engineering Research for AAA. “Given the numerous and well-publicized incidents involving current vehicle technologies – it’s not surprising that people are apprehensive about their safety.”

The survey conducted also found motorists’ interest in Advanced Driver Assistance Systems, remains high. Two-thirds of motorists also want Reverse Automatic Emergency Braking within their vehicles, with 65% taking the survey in favor. Additionally, favorability for Automatic Emergency Braking was similar, at 63%, and Lane Keeping Assistance at 62%.

Furthermore, motorists also believe that Automatic Emergency Braking will stop the vehicle when another vehicle, child, adult, or bicyclist are in front of or behind the vehicle. A AAA study found the system only prevented a collision just once in 40 test runs in the backing up scenarios where something is crossing the path of the vehicle. When conducted with a stationary target behind the vehicle, 10 of the 20 tests resulted in the vehicle stopping.

“AAA wants to collaborate with automakers to establish uniformity in system naming and performance across the industry. By working together, we can assist consumers in understanding the technology present in their vehicles and educate them on how, when and where to use such systems properly. This initiative will help instill confidence in the drivers of the cars of tomorrow, which may be equipped with greater levels of automated technologies.” stated Brannon.

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