What is the future of motoring? The government has announced ambitious new plans for trials for self-driving vehicles. It hopes the UK will be at the forefront of this pioneering technology.
Much as I welcome anything that has the potential to improve road safety, this all feels rather rushed. It is a lot of money to spend on a technology that still has a lot of unanswered questions. Has anyone ever really asked whether we really want or need self-driving cars? Auto Express’s Mike Rutherford is sceptical, and has our final word on page 70. Carly Brookfield looks into the issue as well, in her feature on page 27.
Reducing pollution is vital, and a number of cities are looking into clean air zones. April sees the introduction of the ultra low emission zone in London. The message from the government is confusing; they want local authorities to implement clean air zones, which are supposed to encourage cleaner vehicles, but they don’t seem keen on incentivising the purchase of zero-emission capable cars in the first place. They recently decreased the number of cars eligible for a grant. I explore the positives and negatives around clean air zones on page 37, and electric vehicles on page 54.
We also discuss the dangers of distraction and the role technology plays – whether by helping to improve safety or by causing more of a distraction for drivers. Read the feature on page 20.