How will this affect the automotive industry? Average vehicle size and
cost will likely drop moderately due to right sizing. Vehicle numbers will likely also drop moderately, as there will not be as many vehicles sitting idly. However, the largest
impact will likely be felt by dealerships. As transportation users migrate away from managing their own equipment and towards services with assured delivery of transportation,
individual purchases of vehicles will approach the level of horse purchases of today. With this most car dealerships are likely to disappear.
In Newsletter #2 we discussed how taxi, truck, bus, and many other
professional drivers will start loosing jobs in five years, and all but disappear in the following ten to fifteen years. We also mentioned the impact this will have on
emergency rooms, jails, hospitals, insurance brokers, police, driving instructors, and others as 2 million drunk driving arrests, four hundred thousand injuries, and fifty
thousand deaths disappear, along with the disappearance of the need for the government to manage personal vehicle operation activities.
Transportation services will likely thrive. Those vehicle rental
services that see this change coming and adapt ahead of time will likely be big winners. Likewise vehicle manufactures that prepare ahead of time will dominate the
marketplace. Note that as dealerships and the marketing and selling of vehicles to individuals disappear and the size of vehicles shrink, the bar for entry into the vehicle
manufacturing market will drop and new companies will enter the fray.
Public transportation will likely disappear as it will be replaced by
private services that meet the needs of public transportation users effectively.
What about all of the delivery vehicle drivers, will they still be
needed? While automated vehicles will not be able to deliver mail and packages, as with automated kitchens, delivery of packages and mail is a very common activity that at most
would require simple to moderately complex actuators, sensors, and communications, along with emerging complex computation systems.
Similar to personal transportation discussed above, imagine city wide
delivery vehicles that drop off and pick up neighborhood delivery vehicles, which themselves carry door units that can traverse steps, open gates, walk stairs, open mail boxes,
drop off packages and mail, ring bells, knock on doors, and take pictures of delivered packages on doorsteps or in the hands of receivers.
City wide delivery vehicles will have conveyors,
actuators, sensors, communications, and complex computation systems. Not only will they be able to transfer cargo to neighborhood vehicles, but they will also be able to
connect to large range transport vehicles that are similarly equipped. This has the potential to dramatically reduce the need for warehouses as logistics systems become
more and more intelligent.