Since 2011, Continental as a technology company has periodically conducted mobility studies that focus on a variety of topics. The Mobility Study 2020, the sixth edition of the Continental Mobility Study, surveys attitudes toward various aspects of mobility in Germany, France, the USA, China and Japan. One of the core topics of the current study is automated and autonomous driving. The 2020 survey was carried out in two waves, each with a different focus.
In the second wave in October 2020, a population-representative sample of over 1,000 respondents was surveyed in five countries on three continents: Germany, France, the USA, Japan and China. The focus of this survey was on attitudes toward automated and autonomous driving: What role does driving play for the respondents? How willing are they to relinquish control and what significance do technological developments have for them? These questions are fundamental to acceptance of the technology. Openness to various assistance systems, also and especially to autonomous vehicles, was also queried. The key findings of the first wave of the Continental Mobility Study 2020 are summarized below.
For years, self-driving vehicles have held great promise for future mobility. The convenience of motorized personal transport that gives drivers the freedom to attend to other tasks during the ride, and last but not least, greater safety as drivers lose their significance as a potential source of error make the benefits seem obvious.
Partially autonomous driving is used increasingly today, and assistance systems for specific applications are produced as standard. However, it will be some time before highly automated driving, in which the driver hands over control to the software and no longer has to monitor it permanently, or fully automated and autonomous driving can be operated in regular traffic. The technology will continue to evolve, regulatory requirements will need to be put in place – and you will need people’s acceptance for a technology that hands over control of the vehicle.
Back in 2013, Continental’s mobility study focused on assistance systems and automated vehicles, while the fifth edition in 2018 also took a closer look at people’s attitudes toward the technology. This sixth mobility study is again shining a spotlight on this topic.
Driver assistance systems and automated driving are gaining acceptance worldwide. In China and Japan in particular, openness to the benefits of automated driving is already high, while people in Germany, France and the USA continue to have a wait-and-see attitude. Overall, the technological possibilities in terms of automated driving are far more advanced than the current willingness of drivers to use them. The situation is different, however, for driver assistance systems – here there is a consistently high degree of openness in all five countries, especially when it comes to safety-related functions. These are the key findings of the latest Continental Mobility Study.
Please find here the current press release.
The 2020 survey took place in two stages with different emphases. In addition to the expectations and attitudes regarding electric vehicles, the survey also dealt with changes in mobility against the backdrop of the global COVID-19 pandemic.