Spring BudgetFollowing the Spring Budget announcements of funding for the development of driverless vehicles and 5G networks, TRL’s Academy Director, Nick Reed, gives his view:
“The UK Government’s continued commitment to the development of connected and automated vehicles (CAVs), as well as the 5G networks that will prove vital in supporting them, is very welcome.
“Connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) are developing along two converging paths; fully automated vehicles operating in increasingly sophisticated environments, and road vehicles in which automated systems take responsibility for greater parts of the driving task. The applications for CAVs are exceptionally broad, applying to people, goods or services, representing an enormous market opportunity.
“Users of CAVs stand to benefit in several ways, including improved safety, accessibility, emissions performance and asset use. There will also be substantial commercial benefits, such as the emergence of truck platooning. However, these must be weighed against potential disadvantages, including user confusion, changes in opportunities for employment and threats to equitable transport provision.
“To maximise UK impact of CAVs, it is vital that the key organisations working in this area are provided with an environment in which they can successfully achieve international ambitions from a domestic base. That is the aim of our CAV work within the UK Smart Mobility Living Lab in Greenwich and the announcements in the Spring Budget are a further step in the right direction.”