ZF CEO Says Robotaxis Won’t Become The Norm Before 2030

If you were hoping to be driven around in autonomous shuttles any time soon, you might have to put a pin in that and wait at least a decade before the technology becomes more mainstream, according to ZF boss Wolf-Henning Scheider.

“I’m a little bit more skeptical than some announcements that we’ve heard,” said Scheider. “From our point of view, it will take several more years.”

He also said that his company will launch its first autonomous shuttles in 2021, on a one-way closed circuit at Brussels airport, as reported by Autonews Europe.

“Step by step, we will evolve the technology into fully autonomous systems in urban areas, but I wouldn’t expect it before 2030.”

Scheider then added that he thinks a slower approach to implementing this technology might have a positive effect as “people can get used to the shuttles and feel comfortable. Today there’s still a lot of hesitation about using a driverless car.”

Also read: ZF To Invest $14 Billion In Electric And Autonomous Technologies

Skepticism about how soon we can implement fully self-driving cars on public roads has been shared by other automotive executives too, citing cost, complexity and the need to prove to the public that they are perfectly safe – which is only natural given the incidents we’ve seen in past years.

“We overestimated the arrival of autonomous vehicles,” stated Ford’s Jim Hackett earlier this spring. Meanwhile, companies such as Waymo and Uber have also slowed things down on that front, which means ZF’s new timeline for the public roll-out of driverless robotaxis is probably a realistic one.

Autonomous cockpit design by ZF & Faurecia pictured

  • Richard Alexander

    Elon said there will be a million next year though….

    • Arct1c

      Elon has said a lot of things that weren’t true.

      • Richard Alexander

        You would think that would be a problem at some point, right?

      • Crash Bandicoot

        Elon “pedo guy” musk nahhh dude has always been honest and forthright.

  • Crash Bandicoot

    So basically Uber needs to extend their fiscal runway another 10 years to even have a hope of making money.

  • brn

    The first time you reference ZF, can you please call them ZF Friedrichshafen AG?

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