At the Consumer Electronics Show, Ford’s chief executive officer, Mark Fields, discussed his thoughts on the future of automobiles during a keynote speech.
He predicts that self-driving cars will reach the mass market by 2020, and he hopes his company will be at the forefront of it. Fields also strives for the car maker to use mobility to provide solutions for customers. The automaker wants to make self-driving cars more affordable than those made by rival brands which focus on luxury.
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The first prototypes of such cars came from luxury brands like Daimler, which launched the F015 Luxury in Motion Mercedes Benz concept car. Tesla Motors previously claimed it would be the first company to bring the driverless car to the public but has yet to share details on the matter. Last fall, Elon Musk, CEO for Tesla, made a prediction similar to Fields regarding the future of driver-less cars.
Ford hopes to bring driver-less cars into the mainstream
Whether Ford can make driver-less cars affordable enough for the mainstream market remains to be seen. The technology for such cars is very expensive, most notably, the components for powerful computer processors and radar equipment. On a similar note, Ford was the first mass automaker to offer safety technologies, however, these technologies were significantly more affordable.
Ford explores the possibilities
Fields added that Ford is currently exploring different business plans to ensure everything goes as planned. Ford is looking at 25 varying experiments which include map services for unpaved roads, open parking space detection via a mobile phone, and car swap service.
Technology has and continues to change everything. It’s not surprising that Ford wants to not only be a part of the change but also a significant moving force within it. Ford is one of the leading American automakers, and it’s imperative for the company to remain at the forefront even in the midst of global competition.