July 19, 2012
--- Imagine reading up on the latest
financial news while you drive to work, but unlike the markets, your car won’t
Once something in a Ray Bradbury story, autonomous cars (you don’t have to
brake, accelerate or even steer) could become a reality. Some consumers are
even willing to shell out the extra money for this feature, though interest did
drop once the price was disclosed, according to a survey by J.D. Powers and
After learning the estimated market price would be $3,000, one-fifth of
vehicle owners said they definitely or probably would purchase an autonomous
driving feature in their next vehicle. Before the price was disclosed,
interest for the technology was higher(37%).
Chepenik, a managing partner with Chepenik Financial Services in Winter Park,
who drives often for business, liked the idea of autonomous driving. “I wish I
had that,” Chepenik told PLANADVISER.
Not having to keep his hands on the wheel, he said, would free him to use
e-mail or his phone, but “mostly be safe.”
Men are most interested in paying a premium for a car with an autonomous
driving feature, followed by drivers between the ages of 18 and 37, and
urbanites, according to the survey.
The study also found a lot of interest (41%) in fully autonomous driving
among vehicle owners who were attracted to automatic parallel parking.
The study found that vehicle owners are nearly as likely to select fully automated
technologies as semi-automated ones, such as emergency stop assist ($800),
traffic jam assist ($800) or speed limit assist ($800).
There’s just one thing a so-called autonomous car won’t be able to do: help
you pay for gas.