CHOICE membership

Autonomous Vehicles


I gather the “IP” is protected under copyright, which (primarily US) vested interests keep extending. That’s a whole other fight for Choice. The entire regime has become an obscenity, to the detriment of consumers world wide.

One from Australia:
and two from the US:


An article regarding additional costs to repair semi-autonomous vehicles.


Another concern here might be just who gets to diagnose and repair the technology in the near future.

Will government implement heavily regulated requirements for maintenance, servicing and repair similar to CASA and aircraft maintenance technical licensing?

Will the automotive industry seek the support of government to mandate only automotive retailers can repair autonomous systems for the life of the vehicle?

Will the industry seek to be self regulating in a quest to unburden government while ensuring a closed shop both technically and for profit?
IE No external or independent monitoring and licensing of the technical staff employed with the dealer network training and employing who ever they like in a closed shop environment.

Cynically - does the motor vehicle industry have a duty of care to protect the consumer from ignorance while ensuring the profitability of the industry through reduced competition? It would be a bold ACCC to suggest that the servicing and maintenance of autonomous vehicles was opened up to competition and technical access, putting at risk the killing and maiming of 1,000’s due to one small error by a rogue repairer?

Hence my suggestion the motor manufacturers and dealers will move swiftly to ensure an inhouse future - for our safety! And will do so by also ensuring government does not create an automotive equivalent of CASA. Or the need for independently certified and accountable technical training of specialists that ensures a more open market for maintenance and repair.

Of course Toyota might create a maintenance and diagnostic robot that does it all, putting all the dealer servicing out of business at the same time. Sort of an autonomous vehicle repair facitility?


We are getting towards that now.

Most modern cars being highly computerised require sophisticated and expensive equipment and software to manage. Such support systems may be forbidden to the corner mecanic through protection of IP or cost, or both. The adherence to maintenance by recognised retailers is further coerced by some guarantees being dependant on that service.

Are we going down the Microsoft/Adobe path where you have to rent your car’s system instead of buying it?

Will we see further aggregation, and hence reduced competition, in the car industry through consolidation of software systems for autonomous vehicles?

Here is a wild speculation. Will it possible to lock consumers into one system, similar to Canon vs Nikon? If so you could end up at the age of buying your first car choosing between, Japanese, Korean, European and Chinese systems :mag:; then staying with it for the rest of your riding life and bequeathing it to your children. You can hear the marketeers salivating at the thought.

:mag: No, not American.


At first the vehicles, which are being developed to eventually be autonomous, will be manned by pilots.



An article regarding Ford patenting a process to remove “new car smell” with autonomous vehicles able to drive themselves to a nice sunny spot to do so.

Personally, I have always liked the “new car smell’.


Synthetic polymers and adhesives outgassing volatile organics (carcinogens), glue sniffing…


It is still legal. :innocent:

The more challenging issue is now will an autonomous Uber manage that used car smell when it turns up to take you to work on your daily commute?

Do you have a right to get the same Uber every day?
Do you get to choose who else shares use of your Uber autonomous vehicle when you do not need it?
What is the no garlic no dead shellfish no fermented beans guarantee? :thinking:

Perhaps the issues around autonomous vehicles in a shared ride Gig economy will extend beyond AI, Personal Privacy, and liability.


This article reminded me of an item I read in a Mad magazine when I was a teenager

A couple were pulled up at a traffic light opposite a steak restaurant when the wife said “I just love the aroma”.

The husband responded “Yes. There is nothing like the smell of a good steak cooking” to which the wife retorted “You idiot. I was talking about the smell of our new car”.


Hi I think autonomous vehicles would be a good idea to remove bad drives from our roads ie drunken drivers, distracted phone using drivers, road rage abusers. Surely a programmed car would perform better than these types of drivers and would serve as a penalty for doing the wrong thing.


Indeed, why not wait for a hot day, or better yet set it on fire and really get that off-gassing going!

I wonder what aromas new cars gave off back in the days they were made from steel, timber and leather and when the only air-bag you had was a back seat driver …


Perhaps a bit catty if it was a Mk1Jaguar?:thinking:

More seriously :neutral_face:
With no air conditioning “back in the days” for any Aussie summer and a tin roofed vehicle, aroma was a more human and acquired property. Less to do with the natural materials used inside the vehicle.


A significant proportion of respondents also said they wouldn’t be comfortable travelling in an autonomous vehicle without overrides unless it was proven to be 100 percent safe with no possibility of ever being involved in a collision.




A possible major pitfall for autonomous vehicles. (And lots of other things).


Few modern vehicles would survive a major solar event. Autonomy adds a bit more electronics, but stopped is stopped.




“Flying Rideshare Taxi”?

CASA approval?

Defined travel route for pickup (airport) and central city landing spot (pad)?

Driver (pilot)?

Is this just another way to describe a helicopter?
That it may have more than one rotor for lift does not a taxi make?

That it has an Uber sticker on the window does not a taxi make? At least some of us might hope not if you consider how some taxi drivers can behave. What city was that again - Melbourne? :wink:

Fortunately CASA has strict rules on pilot training, alcohol free rest periods and restricting flying hours. That is until Uber can convince CASA that they are a different case and it is ok to operate one on a car license for no more than 12 hours a day 7 days a week? :money_mouth_face:

No mention of council or Environmental Approval conditions? Perhaps these are not required.:thinking: