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Old Posted Jun 3, 2014, 7:36 AM
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Hatman Hatman is offline
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Mercedes-Benz Completes First Fully Autonomous 100 km Drive

Mercedes-Benz has claimed a world-first this week, completing a 100 kilometre journey with a fully autonomous version of its new S-Class sedan.

The specialised ‘Intelligent Drive’ car, based on the top-shelf S 500, represents Merc’s entry in the auto industry’s latest obsession: self-driving vehicles.

Underscoring the importance of the event, the S 500 Intelligent Drive’s journey traced the route of the world’s first powered long-distance road trip, undertaken 125 years ago by Karl Benz’s wife Bertha.

Also, from another article, comes an estimated cost savings compared to human-driven taxis:

The report suggested that a fleet of 9,000 automated vehicles hailed by smartphone could carry as many people with a wait time of less than one minute. It would be cheaper, too, an estimated 50 cents per mile compared to a current cost of $4 per mile, a calculation that assumes a 15 percent profit.

From $4 to $0.50 per mile will make a huge impact on mode split (people choosing between taxi or transit etc). For comparison, according to AAA, the cost of owning an average sedan costs 59.2 cents per mile:

This is further proof in my theory that simple economics (insurance rates, cost of ownership, fuel costs etc) will move people towards autonomy much faster than laws and regulations and incentives ever will.

Last edited by Hatman; Jun 3, 2014 at 7:51 AM.
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