Chairman of Audi AG, Rupert Stadler, said at the Urban Future Awards in Berlin on Tuesday that driverless cars will be present on the streets within the next two years: “This will happen, latest 2016.”
“For the piloted driving, Audi is in the lead, and others will follow in one or two years. The importance is that Audi is perceived as a progressive brand, that we really try to engage different stakeholders. And if others will benefit that's fine, that's okay. Where's the problem?"
The question was raised after discussions over traffic jams, and how on average in Sao Paolo, drivers are spending four weeks of each year sitting in traffic jams. So how do you add value to that, usually wasted time?
"With pure, piloted driving, the driver can take his hands off the steering wheel. He is liberated to do different things. To use it to do FaceTime with his customers, with his business, with his family. That way we create added value,” said Stadler.
He did, however, note that even though driverless cars will be seen in two years, it will take decades before it becomes commonplace.
"There will be nothing happen overnight, believe me. How to change the infrastructure in a city like Berlin? (sic) We should not be naïve, this is a process of 10, 15, 20 years."
Best paying customers, on the other hand, will probably get their hands on (or off) a driverless Audi before the next European football cup.
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