Amidst The Rise in AI Technology, Can We Have a Self-Flying Car in Our Future?

by Carter Toni


Artificial intelligence (AI) is a method of replicating human decision-making and thinking ability that uses data and algorithms. In various industries, such as financial services, information, and communication technology (ICT), life science, retail, healthcare, industrial manufacturing, automotive, oil and gas, and chemicals, algorithms are being used to assist systems in learning and solving problems their own time. When it comes to using artificial intelligence for day-to-day tasks, the ICT and financial services industries (Exhibit 1) are well-established. Companies in the information and communications technology (ICT) sector offer artificial intelligence-based assistants for commercial uses (examples are Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant). Compared to the Financial Services, ICT, Retail, and Healthcare sectors, artificial intelligence in the automobile industry is at a lesser rate. The automobile industry can be classified as a ‘new adopter’ of artificial intelligence technology in acceptance and application.

The Newest Technology Available at The Moment

Deep learning, machine learning, and computer vision are among the artificial intelligence technologies used to uncover robotic automation applications within the automobile industry’s future trends. Autonomous vehicles are guided by artificial intelligence (AI), which also assists drivers in safety, controls the fleet, and improves services such as vehicle insurance and inspection. Artificial intelligence is finding new uses in the automotive manufacturing industry, increasing the rate of production, accelerating the process, and lowering costs. Chatbots, another excellent example of AI Development Solutions for Businesses and Enterprises in the automobile industry, are promising developments. They can assist a bidder in reducing the amount of staff and effort required and fulfilling and addressing client inquiries. Connectivity, supported by artificial intelligence, makes it possible to track vehicle data more readily for various applications such as driver safety, fleet management, insurance, and predictive maintenance. The sharing or splitting of vehicle data benefits the customer, repairs, and the overall development of the entire mobility ecosystem.

Companies Using AI to Its Fullest

BMW. BMW has implemented artificial intelligence in every sector, ranging from research and development to administration and customer service. Not only does the corporation use artificial intelligence, but it also makes use of related technology types such as Natural Language Processing (NLP). Clients, employees, and company processes all benefit from its presence. Customers, for example, receive assistance through the Intelligent Personal Assistant directly in their automobiles, whereas employees receive assistance from translation tools and context-processing aides during administrative operations. AI-based machine learning and data analysis are utilized in energy management in buildings and vehicles. At the same time, image processing AI is being used to aid customers in driver assistance systems and employees in manufacturing processes.

NVIDIA. NVIDIA DRIVE PX2 is an open artificial intelligence (AI) car computing platform that enables automakers and their tier 1 suppliers to speed the manufacture of self-driving cars. A palm-sized, energy-efficient module enables AutoCruise capabilities scalable up to a powerful artificial intelligence supercomputer capable of autonomous driving at high speeds.

Toyota. Toyota, one of the world’s largest automobile manufacturers, is utilizing artificial intelligence to build a futuristic metropolis for its 2,000 employees and their families in Toyota City. Yes, without a doubt, robots will be used to power the metropolis as well. An operating system will administer the city, and it will feature roadways designated specifically for self-driving vehicles, allowing them to go without interruption. Japan’s Toyota Motor Corporation has begun the construction of a 175-acre smart city on the island of Kyushu. The corporation claims that artificial intelligence and other technologies will serve as a “living laboratory,” which has many people scratching their heads in confusion. Construction on the “Woven City,” located at the foot of Mount Fuji, is expected to be completed in about 62 miles from Tokyo. One of the goals of creating such a city is to act as a proving ground for cutting-edge technology that can be applied to other urban contexts, such as robotics, artificial intelligence, and interconnected smart houses.

Self-Driving Cars


Uber is a two-sided platform that connects drivers with riders in its most basic form. It does not own the vehicles and instead relies on private drivers who use their automobiles to transport passengers. Because the drivers are independent contractors, Uber incurs fewer expenses. Because Uber is a two-sided platform with few assets, it created a significant network effect and expanded rapidly into other markets. When compared to the automobile rental industry, where multiple companies serve different markets and geographies, the ride-share industry is highly consolidated, resulting in a system in which the winner takes all is the case.

On the other hand, one of the most significant consequences of self-driving cars may be the extinction of private automobile ownership. Average car utilization is only 5 percent, with most of the time spent parked in the garage or parking lot when not being used. Parking occupies around 20% of commercial land in major U.S. urban areas, resulting in a significant waste of resources. When self-driving cars are applied to ride-sharing services, the travel fare might be reduced to a third or even a fifth of its current level, provided we consider the driver’s compensation and improved utilization. In comparison, owning a private automobile would be too expensive in this case. As more individuals abandon their automobiles, Uber’s business model as a two-sided platform will crumble.


According to Raj Kapoor, Lyft’s chief strategy officer and director of business for self-driving vehicles, autonomous vehicles will be important to the future of urban transportation. However, he cautioned that riders may need to adapt their expectations and that the emerging driverless car sector may have unanticipated “second-order” implications that they are not aware of. He presented at the Move 2020 mobility conference in London yesterday, where he shared lessons learned from one of Lyft’s commercial self-driving operations in the United States. Nearly two years ago, the San Francisco-based ride-hailing business formed a partnership with Ireland’s Aptiv to debut a fleet of autonomous vehicles on Lyft’s ride-sharing network.

Different Companies Offering an Autonomous System

Announcing their collaboration in autonomous car technology on July 14, 2019, Ford and Volkswagen said that they would be investing more than $7 billion (£5.57 billion) on the autonomous vehicle technology platform Argo AI, as well as other initiatives. Argo AI is focused on developing a self-driving system that meets the requirements of the Society of Automobile Engineers (SAE) Level 4.

On March 15, 2018, General Motors stated that it would begin manufacturing its self-driving electric Chevy Bolts in a Michigan factory with a $100 million investment, starting in 2019. Vehicles such as the “Cruise AV,” as General Motors refers to them, will be the company’s first production-ready vehicle designed from the ground up to function without a steering wheel, pedals, or human controls.

As part of a strategy for the Japanese and American automakers to collaborate on developing and producing an autonomous car, Honda announced on October 3, 2018, that it had acquired a stake in General Motors Subsidiary Cruise Holdings. Honda will pay General Motors $750 million upfront due to its $2.8 billion investment over the next 12 years. Honda will also acquire a 5.7 percent share in Cruise Holdings.

Self-Flying Cars

According to a British study, buying and operating a flying automobile will be a true luxury, with ownership and operation costing on average more than £535,000 (roughly $741,000.) With this figure, we can include the announced retail price of these future flying automobiles, in addition to the costs of obtaining the necessary pilot’s license and the costs of maintaining and fueling the vehicle. According to research conducted by Pentagon Motor Group, a UK-based auto sales website, owning a flying car will cost on average £535,831 — or approximately $742,498 — when the first versions hit the market shortly. Experts summed up the costs of purchasing a car, refueling it, learning how to fly, insurance, and parking to calculate this figure. For example, just obtaining the proper type of pilot’s license to operate one of these aircraft might cost up to £26,830 (or around $37,190). A similar-sized and-weight aircraft operated by someone with no prior experience is assumed to cost £12,850 (about $17,810) in insurance costs. Although the vehicle itself will cost approximately £500,000 ($693,000), acquiring the vehicle will be the most expensive item on the list. The AeroMobil, the Aska, the Moller Skycar 400, the Terrafugia, the SkyDrive, and the Pal-V are just a few of the vehicles that have been included in the research. This concept, which was developed in the Netherlands, can become the first flying automobile to hit the market as early as 2022. Within seconds, this vehicle transforms from the appearance of a compact sports car on the road to that of an aircraft in the air!


To summarize, according to the technology business chief executive officer, flying automobiles might be commercially available as early as 2024. Still, regulations for controlling the new form of air traffic will worry. A distinction must be made, says Hugh Martin, CEO of Lacuna Technologies, which assists communities in developing transportation regulations. There is a difference between the time when automobiles can fly and when they will be safe and reliable when flying over the skies. In an interview with CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” on Tuesday, he stated that “depending on who you talk to, I think [2024] may be a time frame.” Several automobile manufacturers are working on the development of aerial vehicles. Xpeng, a Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer, and Fiat Chrysler. However, he pointed out that while some people would purchase flying cars, the majority will most likely continue to ride on the road in electric vehicles or self-driving cars. According to him, it is possible that vehicles that do not have to lift off the ground are safer and can transport more passengers.

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