In a recent interview, John Rich, operations chief of Ford Autonomous Vehicles, said that he predicts self-driving cars will only last four years.
Speaking with The Telegraph, Rich explained that his predictions stem from his belief that autonomous vehicles will be so in demand, and used so deliberately, that they will succumb to substantial wear and tear.
“The thing that worries me least in this world is decreasing demand for cars. We will exhaust and crush a car every four years in this business,” he told The Telegraph.
According to The Telegraph, the automaker is well underway to establishing an autonomous fleet to be used as a service for other companies, either for delivery or transportation.
Start-up Argo AI has been in collaboration with Ford in developing and testing autonomous technology in cities across the U.S. Analysts say the industry should be forewarned that a major shift in private ownership will begin to take place, ultimately seeing an increase in fleet transportation services, reported The Telegraph.
Rich reiterated that part of the this shift also stems from the fact that in the future autonomous car fleets will be cheaper, more efficient, and used more often than private vehicles, especially by those in underserved populations.
“Every shred of evidence we’ve seen says that as you drive down cost per mile the miles travelled goes up,” he explained to The Telegraph. “You start to help under-served populations [and] you start to move a lot more people.”