Skip to main content

Autonomous cars to be tested on motorways next year

Autonomous cars will be tested on motorways in the UK next year, government officials have confirmed recently.

According to a Reuters report, this move is a part of a bigger initiative to bring autonomous cars to the streets of UK by 2020.

Plans to start testing autonomous vehicles on motorways will be given by finance minister George Osborne on Wednesday, the Treasury said, adding that all regulatory and legal barriers that might stand in the way of driverless cars will be removed.

"Naturally we need to ensure safety, and that's what the trials we are introducing will test," Osborne said in a statement ahead of his annual budget presentation.”

"If successful, we could see driverless cars available for sale and on Britain's roads, boosting UK jobs and productivity."

The UK Government knows that the autonomous vehicles market is huge and shows great potential, but there are still legal, as well as ethical barriers that need to be addressed before cars without steering wheels or pedals hit the road.

One of the barriers includes who takes responsibility when a driverless car hits another driverless car, or in worst-case scenario, a pedestrian.

During the testing of these vehicles, a person will be in the car at all times, ready to take control of the vehicle if need arises.

Google was one of the first companies to venture into the driverless cars market and now the majority of car manufacturers have joined in on the action, including BMW, Audi, Mercedes, and quite possibly – Apple.