Autonomous vehicle sales revised up

The latest forecast from IHS Automotive predicts sales of nearly 21 million autonomous vehicles by 2035, a substantial increase from its previous estimates.

Its revised predictions is influenced by recent research and development by automotive OEMs, supplier and technology companies who are investing in this area.

IHS says America will lead the world in initial deployment and early adoption of autonomous vehicles, while Japan will simultaneously ramp up industry coordination and investment ahead of the Summer Olympics in Tokyo in 2020.

Deployment in the US will begin with several thousand autonomous vehicles in 2020, which will grow to nearly 4.5 million vehicles by 2035. IHS Automotive also forecasts that more than 5.7 million vehicles sold in China in 2035 will be equipped with some level of autonomy, the single largest market for the technology.

Elsewhere, major markets in western Europe will maintain industry technology leadership through the premium segment, with a little more than three million autonomous vehicles expected to be sold in 2035 and another 1.2 million vehicles in eastern Europe. IHS Automotive also forecasts more than a million vehicles with some level of autonomy in the Middle East and Africa in 2035, with the potential for new and innovative business models and use cases.

Egil Juliussen, Ph.D. and director of research at IHS Automotive, said, ‘Global sales of autonomous vehicles will reach nearly 600,000 units in 2025. Our new forecast reflects a 43% compound annual growth rate between 2025 and 2035 – a decade of substantial growth, as driverless and self-driving cars alike are more widely adopted in all key global automotive markets.’

The latest analysis also takes into account new mobility solutions such as ride sharing and car sharing programmes.

IHS forecasts incorporate a multitude of factors, including current market development of foundational technologies and considerable R&D announcements and collaboration projects under way. These include discussions and initiatives among OEMs and their suppliers, between OEMs and ridesharing companies, technology company initiatives and increased investment in autonomy and mobility by other entities as well.

Jeremy Carlson, principal analyst at IHS Automotive, said, ‘Future mobility will connect and combine many different modes and technologies, and autonomous vehicles will play a central role. IHS expects entirely new vehicle segments to be created, in addition to traditional vehicles adding autonomous capabilities. Consumers gain new choices in personal mobility to complement mass transit, and these new choices will increasingly use battery electric and other efficient means of propulsion.’