A study conducted by multinational corporation KPMG which has been described as the first of its kind, has claimed that the United States, Holland and Singapore are the countries that are best equipped for the forthcoming autonomous driving revolution.

KPMG’s AVRI (Autonomous Vehicle Readiness Index) evaluated the preparedness of 20 countries globally and examined how they would introduce self-driving cars to its public and private transportation fleets. In addition to this, it also highlighted the best practices in order to accelerate AV adoption and deployment.

The AVRI study focused on four key pillars which were policy and legislation, technology and innovation, infrastructure and consumer acceptance. These components have been identified as fundamental requirements that are integral to a country’s capacity and capability to integrate self-driving cars and AV’s into its transportation systems.

It was further disclosed that the pillars were comprised of several variables that reflected the wide range of factors that impact a country’s preparedness for AV adoption and integration. Factors ranged from the number of electric vehicle charging stations in each country, to AV technology R&D to the population’s willingness to adopt such revolutionary technology, regulatory hurdles and obstacles were also examined.

Singapore was rated first in relation to both policy and legislation and consumer acceptance. This doesn’t come as a surprise as Singapore is one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world and its government is aiming for the country to become the world’s first ‘smart nation’. The US and Sweden ranked first in technology and innovation, whilst the UK came fifth in three of the four pillars. Holland ranked consistently high across all key components ensuring its place in the overall top three.

Global Head of Infrastructure at KPMG International, Richard Threlfall said AV adoption represented an amazing opportunity to reduce urban mobility issues in major cities all over the world. He said, “The mobility freedom provided by AVs will have a transformational impact on society. With the tremendous opportunity there are also significant challenges that have to be addressed in order for countries to be able to realize the benefits of AVs.”

He concluded by insisting that planning is a key priority in order to help countries place themselves in a position to be able to facilitate the emergence and subsequent adoption of self-driving cars. He said, “Planning today for an AV future is essential, because it is not a question of if, but when AVs become the dominant mode of transport. Embracing partnerships between government and the private sector can speed technology development, while helping ensure that the introduction of AVs meet public policy objectives. It is important to engage all stakeholders - government, business and citizens -in planning for AVs. It’s not just about transportation; we need to be prepared for the impact of AVs on all aspects of our lives.”