The hype and mystery surrounding the technology behind (and impact of) autonomous vehicles can reach a fever pitch all too easily. It’s likely that while AVs change some things, for many people the benefits can already be achieved through transit. One ad for a Swedish transit agency has produced an ad that elegantly makes this point.
The ad is meant to drive home the point that many of the futuristic, lifesaving technologies the car companies have been hyping to consumers already exists in various modes of public transportation, like buses. Electrified propulsion? Check. Freedom from the shackles of driving? Check. The ultimate shared vehicle? Big check.
It also highlights a major weakness in the theory that self-driving cars will be the ultimate panacea for all our transportation woes: that an autonomous vehicle on the road is still just a vehicle on the road, whether it’s driven by a human or a computer algorithm, and that can only do so much to reduce traffic, pollution, and their associated costs.