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Distressing: The extinction of driving pleasure

Last updated: May 3, 2016

By , Insure.com

Driving a sports car

Driving can be fun, and there's probably never been a better time to be a driver than today. On the whole, today's cars are more powerful, agile, safe, and reliable than any generation of vehicles that came before them.

It's a sad irony that this crop of incredibly fun-to-drive machines exists at a time when many car companies are increasingly focused on ways they can remove drivers from the automobile equation.

Still, says Norman, it may be a little premature to write the obituary of the human driver.

"Although autonomous cars are now capable of doing 90-plus percent of the driving, that remaining small percentage is extremely difficult," he says. "Marketing departments of automobile companies are far more optimistic than the engineers, and they are far more optimistic than the design community and the social scientists who know that the most difficult challenges come from human behavior, not from technical aspects."

So how long will it be before the first fully autonomous vehicles hit the market?

"I think the time is still measured in decades," Norman says. "At least one decade, if not more."

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