Autonomous Vehicles: Smooth or Bumpy Ride Ahead?
In early 2019, transportation was set to undergo a major transformation with the advent of autonomous vehicles (AVs), also referred to as driverless cars, which were nearing completion from an R&D and testing phase. Yet many questions remained open regarding exactly how and when that transformation would occur. The case lays out key issues to consider with respect to the marketplace penetration of AVs and delineates several predictions for how things might play out. The case further describes the motivations and potential courses of action of the multiple stakeholders involved (firms, consumers, government). Students are tasked with examining the various factors that will likely impact the future success and widespread acceptance of AVs, identify potential barriers to customer adoption, describe how a number of industries will be impacted, and propose effective business-models for firms to embrace. Students should also suggest what role they believe government (local and federal) should play in regulating AVs. The case provides relevant information for conducting both qualitative and quantitative analyses.