Most British Consumers Would Still Own a Vehicle in an Autonomous-Vehicle World 

News Release

  • Most UK adults (60 percent) would still own a vehicle even if driverless vehicles were the norm
  • Majority of British consumers (45 percent) believe driverless vehicles won’t become typical before 2030 or later
  • Almost a quarter of British people (21 percent) believe that driverless vehicles will never happen

London, 9 July 2019 – Assurant, Inc. (NYSE: AIZ), a leading global provider of housing and lifestyle solutions that support, protect and connect major consumer purchases, has released findings which reveal that Britain is not quite ready to become a nation of autonomous vehicle drivers. Nearly a quarter of British consumers believe driverless vehicles will never become typical, and for those who do, most predict 2030 or later to be a realistic arrival date.   

As automation within the motor industry continues, fear of the unknown still seems prevalent with consumers. This is decreasing though as the research found that expected anxiety has dropped by 5 percent from Assurant’s study in 2016, with now approximately a third (36 percent) of people claiming they would spend their time vigilantly watching the road if in an autonomous vehicle.  

The research also uncovered the major downsides to not owning a vehicle, which centred around loss of freedom and flexibility. Loss of personal freedom was a key downside for over a third (36 percent) of the consumers surveyed and a loss of the pleasure of driving was another factor for over a tenth (15 percent). Respondents also acknowledged the loss of an emergency car, which for almost a fifth (18 percent) was the biggest disadvantage. 

When it comes to the benefits of motor automation, however, money could be the way to win people over to this future innovation. Over half (57 percent) of those surveyed said cost savings were the biggest upside to not owning a vehicle.  

Rich Green, president, UK & Automotive, Europe, said, “As people continue to engage with vehicles in new and different ways, we need to continue to enhance our ability to address the changing needs of the market. It may come as no surprise that our research shows that Britons are reluctant to say goodbye to the driving experience – 60 percent would still own a vehicle even if driverless vehicles were the norm. This demonstrates the opportunity for ancillary products to their vehicle purchase such as vehicle warranties and service plans which offer consumers protection against unexpected motoring expenses.”