4 misconceptions on "autonomous" cars that can lead cities to disaster, and how to remedy

9 min

"Autonomous cars" are at the top hype among transport and technology specialists, and now it's also a subject on which "non specialists' " (read "normal people") awareness is growing. They came out of the closed circle of robotics specialists, where they had been confined for decades, when Google "shed its light" over them in the early 2010s. Since then, we read with a crescent frequency that "autonomous" cars are the remedy to all the urban flaws created by the motor vehicles in the 20th century. Without much analysis, journalists, consultants and new-come "experts" keep repeating in a snowball fashion, that autonomous cars will eliminate accidents and congestion, reduce emissions (all this often preceded of "virtually all"), and increase the infrastructure's capacity. Very few of this copy/paste articles investigate in depth if all this is true, if at all. The issue today is that this hype is migrating from the Internet to the laws, potentially leading our cities to an urban mobility disaster.

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