SEOUL, March 24 (Korea Bizwire) — While South Korea will allow carmakers to launch and sell a vehicle with basic Level 3 self-driving technology in the domestic market from July, many drivers are in favor of the measure.
Under the initial standards, the Level 3 autonomous car, which is capable of keeping the lane in highways and designated areas of motorways, demands the driver to intervene to change the lane.
According to a survey of 1,000 adult men and women with driver’s licenses conducted by market research firm Embrain, 68.2 percent of drivers approved of the introduction of Level 3 autonomous vehicles.
The respondents welcomed the idea mainly because the rate of traffic accidents is likely to decrease, which accounted for 79.6 percent of the responses.
Some 60.7 percent cited that autonomous cars could provide convenience for people that have mobility restrictions.
On the other hand, those who oppose the commercialization of Level 3 autonomous cars pointed out that it is unclear who will take responsibility in the case of accidents, which accounted for 71 percent.
In addition, 64.5 percent were in opposition considering the fact that any accidents are highly likely to be serious, and 59.2 percent thought this could lead to further accidents.
Meanwhile, when asked what they would do in a completely autonomous car if they owned one, respondents cited ‘rest’ and ‘sleeping’ most frequently, accounting for 52.2 percent and 51 percent, respectively.
The prevailing view was that it would take more than 10 years for the commercialization of a Level 5 completely autonomous car that can operate under all conditions without a driver’s input.
When fully autonomous cars are commercialized, many consumers will be willing to buy them.
Of the total respondents, 65.6 percent responded that they were willing to purchase a self-driving vehicle, if it was completely autonomous.
Men were more willing to buy an autonomous car than women, at 72.8 percent and 58.4 percent, respectively.
However, what was more noticeable was the willingness to utilize a car-sharing service instead of making a purchase.
More than 7 out of 10 respondents, or 72.1 percent, said they were willing to use car-sharing services for completely autonomous cars in the future.
Embrain suggested that since people would not have to drive an autonomous car, they would feel it was not really necessary for them to have their own vehicle.
Kevin Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)