Mazda: New Survey Shows 71% Don’t Want Autonomous Cars

Autonomous cars are coming, so they say. Autonomous cars, trucks, bikes, drones- all of that. It’s coming. Autonomous is the family-friendly future, and everyone who says otherwise is an antisocial anachronism, Hell-bent on destroying the planet and crushing pedestrians beneath two tons of rolling steel. If you want to drive yourself, you are sick and wrong. Which means that, according to Mazda, nearly three out of four of you us are sick and wrong. Welcome to Gas 2!

That’s right. Mazda recently commissioned research firm Ipsos MORI to conduct a survey of 11,008 adults and their motoring preferences. The results surprised even Mazda. “A staggering 71 percent of people surveyed would still want to drive,” said the report, “while only 29 percent would actively welcome the arrival of autonomous vehicles.”

Perhaps more interesting is the fact that age didn’t seem to be a factor in the results of Mazda’s autonomous cars survey. The youngest group surveyed, 18-24 year olds, kept a uniform two-thirds of respondents saying that, even if autonomous cars were readily available, they would still keep driving themselves. Just like the 70+ year olds. Which, I dunno- is that cool?

It’s hard to say. For one thing, the survey took place in Europe, where manual transmissions are more common and driving is, typically, more involved than it on America’s wide highways. On the other hand, you might argue that Americans’ obsession with “freedom” and general mistrust of large institutions and new technology might make them even more likely to want to keep on driving themselves- regardless of what the early adopters might be saying.

What do you think? Are self-driving cars definitely the way forward for smart, progressive people who appreciate the added safety and efficiency that comes with the convenience? Or, you know, will we all just keep driving and crashing? Watch the video, below, featuring Red Bull Mazda driver “Mad” Mike Whiddett giving a demonstration of the exact opposite of autonomous driving, then let us know your take on autonomous cars in the comments section at the bottom of the page.

 

Mad Mike Formula Drift | Red Bull Mazda Miata

Sources | Images: Mazda, via Left Lane News, Auto Overload.

 

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.