Schmidt axel

Many car owners would consider giving up car ownership in the future in favour of autonomous mobility solutions, such as self-driving buses or taxis, according to a new report from Accenture.
It estimates revenues from mobility services will reach nearly €1.2 trillion by 2030.

The report, called Mobility Services: The Customer Perspective, looks at the key challenges for car manufacturers now and in the future and is based on a survey of 7,000 consumers in the US, Europe and China, 85% of whom were car owners.

Despite 96% of those polled saying they think they will own a car in the future, nearly half (48%) would consider giving up car ownership if autonomous mobility solutions were available.

Owners of premium-brand cars were more likely than owners of non-premium brands to opt for mobility solutions, with those in China twice as likely than those in the US to say they would consider giving up car ownership (78% vs. 39%), compared to just over half of European consumers.

Axel Schmidt, a senior managing director at Accenture (pictured) who leads its mobility industry practice globally, said: “The transition from car ownership to mobility-as-a-service seems inevitable, so traditional auto manufacturers will be at great risk of losing customers to new mobility service providers that can establish mature offers.

“Traditional car companies need to begin fully embracing alternatives to the ownership model - becoming brokers of mobility solutions rather than just car manufacturers. And given the greater willingness among the Chinese for autonomous mobility solutions, manufacturers might consider China as a blueprint for their efforts before rolling out solutions to Europe and the US.”

Nearly all consumers expressed a strong desire for add-on services to autonomous mobility trips, such as music and video streaming, wellness (e.g., massage seats), food and hotel services.Juergen Reers, a managing director at Accenture who leads its Mobility X.0 practice, said: “There is clearly great interest, and therefore significant revenue potential, for add-on services in the future of autonomous mobility.

“To get a jump on the competition, car companies should start piloting and refining these services to be ready once autonomous vehicles hit the market.”

Almost half of respondents would change their place of residence if their daily commute could be facilitated by autonomous vehicles, while a third (34%) would consider moving to a suburb or rural area when autonomous vehicles become reality.

The report also indicated that autonomous vehicles could impact brand loyalty. When asked to rank their top criteria for both car purchasing and car sharing from among more than a dozen factors, including price, speed, flexibility, comfort, environmental impact, brand and privacy, respondents ranked brand as the sixth most important factor for car buying but 10th in terms of car sharing.

Reers said: “While brand clearly enables some auto manufacturers to charge a premium for their products, the importance of brand will likely fade for the product and shift to the service as the popularity of car-sharing services and autonomous vehicles grows.”