When will most cars be able to drive fully automatically? Projections of 18,970 survey respondents

Pavlo Bazilinskyy*, Miltos Kyriakidis, Dimitra Dodou, Joost de Winter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)
55 Downloads (Pure)


When fully automated cars will be widespread is a question that has attracted considerable attention from futurists, car manufacturers, and academics. This paper aims to poll the public's expectations regarding the deployment of fully automated cars. In 15 crowdsourcing surveys conducted between June 2014 and January 2019, we obtained answers from 18,970 people in 128 countries regarding when they think that most cars will be able to drive fully automatically in their country of residence. The median reported year was 2030. The later the survey date, the smaller the percentage of respondents who reported that most cars would be able to drive fully automatically by 2020, with 15–22% of the respondents providing this estimate in the surveys conducted between 2014 and 2016 versus 3–5% in the 2018 surveys. Respondents who completed multiple surveys were more likely to revise their estimate upward (39.4%) than downward (35.3%). Correlational analyses showed that people from more affluent countries and people who have heard of the Google Driverless Car (Waymo) or the Tesla Autopilot reported a significantly earlier year. Finally, we made a comparison between the crowdsourced respondents and respondents from a technical university who answered the same question; the median year reported by the latter group was 2040. We conclude that over the course of 4.5 years the public has moderated its expectations regarding the penetration of fully automated cars but remains optimistic compared to what experts currently believe.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)184-195
JournalTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project https://www.openaccess.nl/en/you-share-we-take-care

Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • Automated driving
  • Crowdsourcing
  • Forecasting
  • Online surveys
  • Self-driving


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