January 09, 2012

Consumers Want Cars Equipped With More Safety Devices and Technology That Offers Driver Assistance and Advanced Communications, Accenture Study Shows

The next wave of in-vehicle technologies will create the connected vehicle

NEW YORK; Jan. 9, 2012 – While most consumers continue to place great importance on automotive safety systems, there is also growing demand for automated driver-assistance and traffic-avoidance technologies, according to a new global study by Accenture.

In a study of in-vehicle infotainment (IVI), Accenture surveyed 7,000 drivers in seven countries and found that among the safety technologies currently offered, an overwhelming majority – 91 percent – said they would most like to use is a lane-changing/blind- spot warning system. When asked about future technologies, 83 percent of respondents would like to have in-vehicle technologies that can automatically contact a vehicle recovery organization when their vehicle breaks down, and 75 percent want a system that automatically calls the nearest emergency center if a crash were to occur.

Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of the respondents said they would also like technology that could stop their vehicle and automatically send out an emergency call when, for example, the driver or a passenger suffers a heart attack or similar serious illness. And, 83 percent would welcome technology that can identify traffic signals, congestion, accidents, and delays – warning the driver in advance of such situations.

The Accenture study reinforces the fact that consumers are currently focused on IVI safety-driven technologies. However, it also shows that in the future, they would like their cars to be equipped with more communication- and information-related capabilities – creating the ‘connected vehicle’.

For example, the survey shows that nine out of 12 technologies consumers would most like to have in their vehicles are safety-related. Specifically, 83 percent would like anti-lock breaking systems, while 74 percent and 72 percent, respectively, would favor having night vision and reversing sensors. Additionally, 69 percent said they would like to use a lane-keeping system, 68 percent, an in-vehicle alcohol tester, and 63 percent would welcome a fatigue warning device in their vehicles.

The survey also shows that in the future, 63 percent of the respondents would like to use car-to-car communications, and 59 percent would be interested in having Smartphone controls on their steering wheel. Moreover, 58 percent of consumers would like to be able to read and dictate e-mails while in their vehicle, and 57 percent would be interested in having a windshield that acts as a visual monitor, showing the driver’s vehicle speed, for example, as well as what is happening on the road ahead.

According to the findings, consumer expectations for in-car technologies are no longer limited to the luxury vehicle segment. For example, of the mass-market respondents, those who drive medium/intermediate, compact, small or mini vehicles, 89 percent would like lane-changing and blind spot warning systems included in their vehicles now – compared to 91 percent among all study participants. In addition, 84 percent said they would be interested in having the automated breakdown call system in the near future compared to 83 percent among all respondents.

Accenture estimates that the growing popularity of IVI technologies could add up to $200 in revenues per vehicle in mature markets every year as the use of services provided by IVI technology increases among drivers and passengers.

“In-vehicle infotainment systems are quickly becoming part of mass-market car-buying as the latest IVI technologies inside today’s connected vehicle are increasingly as much a determinant of sales as design, fuel efficiency and performance, “said Marcello Tamietti, managing director of Accenture’s Connected Vehicle group. “As consumer desire for IVI capabilities grows, it will be important for automotive manufacturers to seek partnerships that can offer a sustained, seamless IVI experience.”

The study clearly shows that consumer interest in IVI technologies is spreading around the globe. The following are highlights by country of the in-vehicle capabilities respondents said they would like in the future:

“IVI technologies are capturing the imagination of consumers around the world, whether in developed or emerging markets,” said Tamietti. “The key challenge for automakers will be keeping pace with the ever-changing technologies car-buyers want and capitalizing on the tremendous growth potential that the IVI market represents.”

About the Study

Accenture, through independent research company Coleman Parkes Research, conducted online interviews among adult members of the public in seven countries in December 2011. The countries included the US, France, Italy, China, Malaysia, South Korea, and Brazil. Each survey sample included 1,000 respondents per country. The consumers interviewed also were representative of the luxury and mass-market vehicle segments. All were current vehicle owners and were aged 18 or over.

About Accenture

Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company with more than 244,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries. Combining unparalleled experience, comprehensive capabilities across all industries and business functions, and extensive research on the world’s most successful companies, Accenture collaborates with clients to help them become high-performance businesses and governments. The company generated net revenues of US$25.5 billion for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2011. Its home page is www.accenture.com.

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Val Brown


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Anthony Hatter


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