Public agencies planning for the changes that are likely to confront them with the growing use of connected, automated vehicles (CAVs) and shared mobility systems need to have realistic information about when these new services are likely to be introduced and how rapidly they are likely to expand. The internet and media are full of unrealistically optimistic marketing predictions that are not grounded in reality, and there have not yet been any careful estimates that could provide a solid basis for agencies’ decision making. This project should define estimates of market introduction and growth profiles for a broad range of representative CAV and shared mobility services, accounting for the important factors that will constrain these, such as:
· technological progress needed to ensure that highly automated systems can be proven to be safer than human-driven vehicles for use within their intended operational design domains
· level of technical effort and investments needed to expand operational design domains for each CAV application from their initial limited deployment sites to a wider range of conditions
· the time needed for different sectors of the user population to become comfortable with the use of the new technologies and services
· inertia associated with vehicle lifetimes and the rate of turnover of the vehicle fleet
· historical data regarding the rate of growth in new vehicle features from options on high-end vehicles to standard equipment on all new vehicles
Because of the large uncertainties involved, these estimates should also be defined over a range of assumptions from optimistic to pessimistic so that planners can appreciate and account for these uncertainties.
The objective of this research is to compile useful information on CAV implementation timelines that will be useful to transportation agencies and credible to their decision makers. Assumptions currently being made by planners, real estate developers, and international market analysts should be documented. A survey approach for updating the estimates annually will be developed in coordination with the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) trade alliances. It is hoped that this survey approach will be a model for future efforts dealing with topics such as electrification of the fleet and shared mobility.