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Autonomous Driving Is Not The End For Insurance

Autonomous driving is becoming closer to a reality, which will change many different things.

If autonomous cars are so safe that accidents become rare, can the auto insurance industry survive?

Some car companies think they can eliminate road fatalities through autonomous driving and other safety features. “Our vision is that by 2020 no one should be killed or injured in a new Volvo car,” said the company’s president.

If that future becomes a reality, then why would we need liability insurance for our vehicles? (We’d still need insurance for theft or when someone else crashes into your parked car, for example.)

Automated driving is already here in several production cars, and dozens ofcompanies and university labs are working in the field. Tesla estimates that its Autopilot feature cuts accident rates in half, and that’s just in its current beta release. In Forbesalone, there have been at least four articles in the last four months about the possibledeath of auto insurance. So, the time seems right to take a closer look at the issues.

Why care?

The US auto insurance industry is significant: it generates $220 billion in annual revenue and supports 277,000 jobs, about the same number of mechanical engineeringjobs. Consultancy KPMG predicts that the market will shrink 60% by the year 2040.

If autonomous cars are so safe that accidents become rare, can the auto insurance industry survive?

Some car companies think they can eliminate road fatalities through autonomous driving and other safety features. “Our vision is that by 2020 no one should be killed or injured in a new Volvo car,” said the company’s president.

If that future becomes a reality, then why would we need liability insurance for our vehicles? (We’d still need insurance for theft or when someone else crashes into your parked car, for example.)

Automated driving is already here in several production cars, and dozens ofcompanies and university labs are working in the field. Tesla estimates that its Autopilot feature cuts accident rates in half, and that’s just in its current beta release. In Forbesalone, there have been at least four articles in the last four months about the possibledeath of auto insurance. So, the time seems right to take a closer look at the issues.

Why care?

The US auto insurance industry is significant: it generates $220 billion in annual revenue and supports 277,000 jobs, about the same number of mechanical engineeringjobs. Consultancy KPMG predicts that the market will shrink 60% by the year 2040.

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