Inside Story

What’s the future of driverless cars?

Tesla Motors has reported first death involving its “autopilot” cars.

American carmaker Tesla is known for pushing the boundaries with its new technology.

The autopilot feature on its Model S was released as a software update last year – something that was unheard of in the car industry.

It has technology that allows a car to change lanes and brake on its own, among other things.

But that same feature is now under scrutiny after it emerged that a Tesla driver was killed while using it last May.

The US government has opened an investigation into the crash. Which could prompt new safety regulations.

It will also be a test case for how the public responds to a death at the hands of this kind of technology.

Some worry that these types of accidents could become more common as  car manufacturers move towards driverless cars.

Tesla Motors says its autopilot feature is improving all the time. And that its drivers have travelled more than 200 million kilometres in autopilot without incident.

But are we ready to embrace this kind of technology? And beyond driverless cars, how will artificial intelligence change the world?

Presenter: Fauziah Ibrahim


Noel Sharkey – professor of artificial intelligence and robotics at the University of Sheffield

Anne Lise Kjaer – global futurist focusing on consumer behaviour and needs

Sam Abuelsamid – senior analyst on the transportation team at Navigant Research