Yes, there will still be a demand for vehicles, but surely less than today. While it's one thing to try to predict the number of vehicles needed to serve the population, it's another to predict the effect on highways.

I have not seen any research on the effect on highways yet. Just because the same vehicle can be used for multiple trips doesn't mean that the number of vehicles on the highway will decrease. Here are some thoughts to mull over:

- If usage rates are highest during peak times, that might encourage people to spread out their commute times, reducing the number of vehicles needed and the street capacities.

- Because a user wouldn't have to deal with parking, it is conceivable that mass transit use could increase: a car could drop you off at a rail station (or BRT, etc) and, if needed, you could take another private vehicle at the other end. No waiting, very little walking.

- Many users would likely want to own their own vehicle for some of the same reasons they do today: instantly available, can leave your belongings in it, familarity.

- In theory, more vehicles could be crammed on a highway at high speeds since control and reaction times should be more accurate.

- On city streets, I assume there would be less capacity improvement since it's hard to get closer than bumper-to-bumper.

Peri

------ Original Message ------
From: "Ed Blackmond via EV" <ev@lists.evdl.org>
To: "Electric Vehicle Discussion List" <ev@lists.evdl.org>
Sent: 09-Jun-15 4:30:05 PM
Subject: Re: [EVDL] How Uber's Auton-EVs will reshape the economy


On Jun 9, 2015, at 2:51 PM, Ben Goren via EV <ev@lists.evdl.org> wrote:

On Jun 9, 2015, at 6:02 AM, brucedp5 via EV <ev@lists.evdl.org> wrote:

 How Uber's Autonomous Cars Will Reshape The Economy By 2025
 By SeekingAlpha,  May 31, 2015 By Zack Kanter

For anybody skeptical about this, I have two questions. How many people had smart phones in 2005? How many people do you know today who don’t have a smart phone?


 Couple more thoughts on this....

First, I think there's still a logistical challenge to be faced with replacing the commuter car fleet with autonomous Johnny Cab taxies -- namely, that there's a reason why rush hour is a clusterfuck of single-occupancy vehicles. To a first approximation, we'll still need roughly the same number of self-driving public / private cars as we do today, because we'll still have roughly the same number of people going to work at roughly the same time. And those people will be as interested in sharing a ride with other people in the future as they are today. That is, it seems to me like the estimates in the article are naïvely assuming a fleet sized for the average demand will suffice, whereas the fleet still needs to be sized for peak demand. Electric grid operators could offer some insights to these analysts.

Around here (Silicon Valley), the commute congestion period lasts about four hours in the evening from 3pm to 7pm. It seems to be a little more spread out in the morning. A vehicle that takes someone home from work between 3pm and 4pm could take somebody else home from work from 5pm to 6pm and pick up somebody else at 7pm and take them home. This indicates that peak size could be on the order of 1/3 of todays commuter fleet.

Would a driverless car be allowed to use the HOV lane?

Ed

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