Fear of Bullies: Volvo Won’t Mark Self-Driving Cars

In a field trial scheduled for 2017 in London, where Volvo will test 100 autonomous vehicles, Volvo will abstain from specifically marking the cars, reports The Guardian. This is out of fear that bullies try to take advantage of the cars and harass them

Volvo’s senior technical leader Erik Coelingh expects that other drivers could try to abruptly brake in front of the autonomous vehicles. Coelingh quotes a survey among  12,000 drivers in eleven countries, which revealed that “aggressive drivers may see the autonomous cars as easy targets for bullying.”

One driver interviewed for the survey said: “I’ll be overtaking all the time because they’ll be sticking to the rules.” Another said: “They are going to stop. So you’re going to mug them right off. They’re going to stop and you’re just going to nip around.”

A similar field trial is planed for Stockholm. Participants at those trials will also be monitored to see how their behaviors change once they start trusting an autonomous vehicle.

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