“It will be a progressive thing, just like computing. If you think about a vehicle that can drive anywhere, anytime, in any circumstance, cold, rain—that’s longer than 2021. And every manufacturer will tell you that,” Hackett said.
He indicated that autonomous vehicles may not replace human-driven cars outright, and shared fleets won’t necessarily supersede private car ownership either.
Autonomous vehicle intelligence “could play a role in vehicles that people own, vehicles that aren’t supposed to crash,” Hackett said. “You’re buying the capability because of the protection it gives you. It’s also possible it could be applied in these big, disruptive ways that of course we’re not blind to, but my bet is we don’t know. So again, that’s a good position for Ford to be in, because the company can actually advantage itself both ways.”