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.