So who’s ahead in the frenzied race to deploy autonomous vehicles?
Not one of the Silicon Valley giants, says consulting firm Navigant Research, but rather four established automakers: Ford, General Motors, Renault-Nissan and Daimler.
Navigant evaluated and ranked 18 automakers, suppliers and tech companies based on their strategies and execution of their plans thus far. It says the four carmakers have developed advanced driver assistance systems, outlined detailed technology plans and moved ahead rapidly with strategic partnerships and investments.
The next best positioned for long-term success is this group: BMW, Volvo, Volkswagen Group, Hyundai-Kia, Tesla, PSA and Toyota, as well as Google’s Waymo, and suppliers ZF and Delphi. This second wave suffers from a lack of partnerships, investments or consumer trust — factors that Navigant concedes could easily change.
Honda, Uber, self-driving startup NuTonomy and Chinese technology company Baidu bring up the rear. Navigant says these companies lack a clear strategy for deployment and adequate public road testing of their technology.