Driverless car trials to begin on UK motorways next year

Driverless cars will be tested on Britain’s motorways next year, chancellor George Osborne is to announce in his budget on Wednesday.

Trials will begin on a small number of local roads in the coming before being extended to motorways in 2017.

Roads in Bristol, Coventry, Milton Keynes and Greenwich are reportedly being prepared for tests, although details have not yet been revealed about how they will be carried out.

The chancellor said: “At a time of great uncertainty in the global economy, Britain must take bold decisions now to ensure it leads the world when it comes to new technologies and infrastructure. That’s what my budget next week will seek to do.

“Driverless cars could represent the most fundamental change to transport since the invention of the internal combustion engine. Naturally, we need to ensure safety, and that’s what the trials we are introducing will test.”

Osborne will also bring forward proposals to overturn current UK restrctions on autonomous driving, paving the way for self-driving cars to take to UK roads by 2020.

Read more: Can the public be convinced that driverless cars are safe?

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Cameron Clarke

Cameron Clarke has been a journalist at The Drum for more than 10 years and is now its Deputy Editor. Based in the UK, he is primarily responsible for overseeing The Drum's coverage of the media industry and marketing agencies. His work includes long reads on Brewdog, Patagonia, De Correspondent and the future of sports rights. He was named Feature Writer of the Year at the 2017 PPA Scottish Magazine Awards.

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