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What is the Future of Self-Driving Trucks?

Self-driving cars are becoming less and less of a science fiction possibility in the commercial world: they're being tested as taxi alternatives through Uber in a few major cities around the United States, and Ford just chose Jim Hackett as CEO because of his promised focus on building self-driving cars. The freight transportation industry might face just as quick a shift to self-driving vehicles, or an even faster one, as people become more comfortable with the idea of robots on the road.

What is the projected future of self-driving trucks?

  • While self-driving vehicles won't take over the whole industry, they'll impact sizable percentages of transportation jobs.Warren Buffett is expecting the Burlington Northern railroad to take a hit from self-driving cars, which can range from traditionally sized cars to freight trucks and potentially even trains themselves, that can reroute individual shipments directly to purchasers instead of a train yard.
  • Goldman Sachs predicts that drivers could lose up to 300,000 jobs a year once self-driving vehicles fully saturate the market.This won't be immediate since partial to fully self-driving cars will only slowly start to permeate the market and Goldman Sachs further predicted that it would be 2025 before even a fifth of total car sales would be for self-driving models. However, this means that trucking jobs could slowly start to turn over to self-driving vehicles. This trend still has a great deal of uncertainty in it, and it will have a slow transition period. 

This trend still has a great deal of uncertainty in it, and it will have a slow transition period. However, it does mean that it's never too early to start thinking about how clients will see self-driving trucks, to develop your long-term business model with self-driving trucks in mind, and to keep an eye out for changes in the industry. If you want to see more about future semi-trucks trends and the latestest industry trends, browse Michigan Truck Sales & Equipment here.