CES 2016: Volvo Says Consumers Want Steering Wheels In Autonomous Cars

According to the 10,000 consumers that provided their insight into Volvo’s Future of Driving survey, it seems that people will still want their autonomous vehicles to come with steering wheels.

On one hand, embracing autonomous driving is only natural. Even today, when the world hasn’t yet come to terms with this type of technology, most people would probably agree to let their car do all the driving on long boring journeys. At least some of the time.

But aside from that, it seems that a very large majority would prefer to be able to take control of their self-driving vehicle at any moment, without having to fiddle with some sort of joystick or control device.

By the way, that large majority was actually 92% of the people who took the survey, which means that total control of our vehicles isn’t something we’re ready to relinquish just yet as a society. Perhaps, we never will be.

Also, 81% of respondents also believe that it’s not the car owner who should take responsibility if an accident occurs when the car is driving itself, but the car manufacturer itself – which is something that Volvo is definitely not fighting against.

If you were worried that we, as a society, were ready to give up on enjoying driving altogether, you can now rest assured as it turns out that 88% of those same respondents think that autonomous technology should still respect the love of driving – with 78% believing that the tech will make their time traveling more “useful and worthwhile”.

The last piece of the survey stated that 90% feel that autonomous cars should be able to pass a human driving test – which by the way, makes a great deal of sense since you probably wouldn’t feel comfortable flying in an airplane whose autopilot wasn’t able to perform a landing as well as a human could, right?

“People have told us that they need to feel in control and have the choice of when to delegate driving to the car. Today, that need is ultimately fulfilled with the presence of a steering wheel,” said Volvo’s Anders Tylman-Mikiewicz. “Therefore, a steering wheel is necessary until those needs change.”

At the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Volvo announced that it is expanding its online conversation about autonomous driving so that everyone around the world can have their say on the Future of Driving.