Not all of our self-driving cars will be electrically powered — here’s why

“[Autonomous vehicle] equipment can consume anywhere from about 500 watts to 1,500 watts, depending upon the sensor configuration, processors used and whether GPUs are used and how many,” said Raj Rajkumar, an engineering professor at Carnegie Mellon University who works on self-driving technology. “This power draw is neither negligible nor substantial enough for serious concern in a typical AV.”
Rajkumar argues that other factors, such as market forces and usage will play a bigger role in determining the type of powertrain OEMs end up selecting for their autonomous fleets.