How Will Autonomous Vehicles Disrupt Fleet Management?, from Automotive Fleet.
Publicly held corporations include risk factors in their annual reports that forecast potential market forces that may impact their business in the future. Recently, four companies — three insurance companies and an auto-parts supplier — cited the emergence of autonomous vehicles as potentially disruptive to their future business. This is the first time autonomous vehicles have ever been cited by companies in an annual report as a disruptive market force.
The three insurance companies — Travelers, Mercury General Corp., and Cincinnati Financial Corp. — anticipate a decrease in accidents that occur due to driver error, which may decrease future consumer demand for auto insurance products. Similarly, auto-parts supplier LKQ Corporation said its business will be impacted if the volume of accident repairs declines due to fewer accidents.
These reports got me thinking: What impact would autonomous vehicles have on the fleet market?
Benefits of Autonomous Vehicles
Many of the newer vehicles on the road today are, in reality, semi-autonomous vehicles, capable of performing actions independent of the driver, such as adaptive cruise control, collision avoidance braking, parking assist, and lane assist and lane departure warnings. These driver-assist technologies, coupled with advances in vehicle connectivity and vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication, are the necessary precursors, or building blocks, to developing a fully autonomous vehicle.