I’ve said that I think are driverless future is very close, and that by 2030 a huge portion of the cars on the road will be driving themselves around. Two bits of news this week have really bolstered my case.
At a news conference on Tuesday at the company’s research center in Palo Alto, Calif., Mark Fields, Ford’s chief executive, said the company planned to mass produce driverless cars and have them in commercial operation in a ride-hailing service by 2021.
Beyond that, Mr. Fields’s announcement was short on specifics. But he said that the vehicles Ford envisioned would be radically different from those that populate American roads now.
“That means there’s going to be no steering wheel. There’s going to be no gas pedal. There’s going to be no brake pedal,’’ he said.
The two companies announced a $300 million partnership this morning to deploy the cars for use in a major city, the first of its kind for any traditional automaker or tech company. There is, however, one big catch: for now the autonomous Volvos will be supervised by human drivers.
The driverless future is coming soon.