By Mitch Hagney, Excerpted From The Rivard Report
San Antonio’s new chapter of the University of Texas’ McCombs School of Business hosted a special panel presentation titled Implications of Fully Autonomous Vehicles and their Impact on San Antonio Wednesday evening at the Pearl. Introduced by Red McCombs himself and moderated by the chapter’s Co-President Hunter Stanco, the discussion yielded a pragmatic assessment of how experts foresee autonomous cars to be rolled out.
The panel included an expert in autonomous drones, a serial tech investor, an experienced car manufacturer, and an auto insurance specialist. With a billionaire car salesman as the lead-in, the industrial diversity within the panel revealed several differences of opinion as well as points of consensus in predicting the future of autonomous vehicles. Some industry professionals have argued that ride-share services with autonomous vehicles will be so affordable that car ownership will “all but end” by 2025.
Rob Adams, a serial investor and director of Texas Venture Labs at the McCombs School, said business transportation needs will outrun consumer use of automated vehicles. “There are bits and pieces that will be adopted very fast, like interstate trucking that goes through the night,” he said. “The cost advantages are just so great that the economics will probably overwhelm the obstacles to their adoption.”