Navigant: Automated driving tech could dramatically reduce vehicles on roads by 2035

Tuesday May 23, 2017 0 comments Tags: Navigant Research, automated vehicles, Scott Shepard

BOULDER -- Mobility services enhanced by automated driving could result in dramatically fewer vehicles on roads by 2035, according to a new report from Navigant Research.NavigantNEWlogoUSE

The report analyzes competing powertrain options for light duty vehicles (LDVs), providing global forecasts for annual sales and vehicle populations, driven by scenario forecasts on battery prices, oil prices and autonomous mobility system penetrations.

The potential of automated driving technologies promises to disrupt the global transportation system through improved efficiency in cost, time and space. Navigant said this is likely to encourage greater adoption of LDV travel via highly utilized vehicles, which are expected to become smaller and increasingly energy efficient. 

“By decreasing the costs and hassle of LDV travel through automation, transportation is apt to become more dependent on it, but if vehicle automation is not accompanied by electrification or alternative fuels, its net impact will be to increase fossil fuel consumption,” said Scott Shepard, Navigant senior research analyst.

“In this respect, city governments will wield significant power in determining what technologies are adopted in automated mobility services, and those determinations are likely to be to the advantage of vehicles with zero-emissions capabilities.”

Alternative fuels do have the potential to serve as reliable replacements to gasoline and diesel, according to the report. Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are expected to account for 8 percent of the global LDV population by 2035 but could reach as high as 17 percent with high oil prices and aggressive declines in battery prices.

The report, Transportation Forecast: Light Duty Vehicles, evaluates the economics and capabilities of competing powertrain options that will feed the future transportation system.

The study provides market sizing for the overall LDV market and light duty internal combustion engine, stop-start, hybrid, plug-in hybrid, battery electric, fuel cell, natural gas, and propane autogas vehicles (ICEVs, SSVs, HEVs, PHEVs, BEVs, FCVs, NGVs, and PAGVs).

Global forecasts for annual sales and vehicle populations are driven by scenario forecasts on battery prices, oil prices, and autonomous mobility system penetrations within the LDV fleet.

Forecasts are provided by segment under conservative, base, and aggressive scenarios. Core model scenario forecasts are also provided alongside powertrain sensitivities to each scenario parameter.

An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the Navigant Research website.