How will Brits use driverless cars?

View of City of London offices at dusk

The arrival of self-driving cars is still some way off. But people are already thinking about how they will benefit from their introduction, according to a new survey exploring how Brits will use driverless cars.

Despite a recent poll suggesting that only one in four UK drivers would feel comfortable using a driverless car, Brits still have plenty of thoughts on how they will spend their new-found leisure time.

The new research – The Great British Driverless Car Survey – by Volkswagen dealers Citygate, found that one of the most popular uses for a driverless car will be to undertake long trips. 

According to the survey, a third of Brits (34%) plan to use driverless cars for long-distance travel – a figure that grew to 40% among younger respondents (18-24s).

Respondents in England appear most keen on long-distance driverless travel, which was seen as a lower priority by people in Scotland and Wales.

In both locations the daily commute took precedence, with 32% of Scots and 23% of Welsh drivers planning to hand over driving duties on the way to work.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, letting a driverless car handle the daily commute was a priority for respondents throughout Britain, with more than a quarter (26%) wanting to do so.

Brits are also interested in being able to travel when under the influence, with more than a quarter of respondents (28%) planning to use a driverless car in this way.

Male respondents were particularly interested in using driverless cars after a night out, with almost a third (32%) planning to do so.

A recent European survey suggested that one in six drivers are ready to give up the school run and let a driverless car take the strain. 

While some Brits (14%) plan to do the same, attitudes to doing so appeared to be split along gender lines. One in five male respondents (20%) said that they would use a driverless car for the school run, while fewer than one in ten females questioned (9%) saw this as a priority.

Citygate’s Great British Driverless Car Survey was carried out online and asked 10,000 Brits under what circumstances they would use driverless cars.