U-M Survey: Connected Vehicles Pique Interest, Concern


tNearly 90 percent of Americans, Australians, and Britons are interested in connected vehicles — which wirelessly connect with other vehicles on the road to help drivers avoid rear-end, lane change, and intersection crashes — and 92 percent are concerned about security breaches and data privacy in relation to the technology, says a recent survey from the University of Michigan.

tThe survey, led by researchers Brandon Schoettle and Michael Sivak of the U-M Transportation Research Institute, polled nearly 1,600 online respondents about their familiarity with and general opinion of connected vehicles. They found the majority expressed concern about system failure and performance, especially during bad weather, and that drivers will rely too much on the technology or will be distracted by it.

t“Safety is always one of the top concerns in transportation, and carries over into air travel and vehicle use,” Schoettle says. “The benefits of mobility and environment don't seem as important as the universal interest of safety.”

tEven so, about 75 percent of respondents said they believe that connected vehicles will reduce the number and severity of crashes, improve emergency response times, and result in better fuel economy. In addition, more than 60 percent expect less traffic congestion, shorter travel times, and lower vehicle emissions.

tOf those surveyed, only a fraction — 27 percent of Americans, 22 percent of Australians, and 17 percent of Briton — were aware that connected vehicle technology exists.

tThose in the U.K. seem to have the highest overall opinion of connected vehicles, with 67 percent showing a positive response. In comparison, 63 percent of Australians and 57 percent of Americans reported a positive opinion. Americans were also more likely to be concerned about issues relating to vehicle security and data privacy.