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Younger Generations More Trusting of Autonomous Technology

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April 29, 2016—Younger generations have a much higher level of confidence in automotive technology, especially autonomous vehicle technology, than older generations, according to a survey from J.D. Power.

The 2016 U.S. Tech Choice Survey, released Thursday, found that consumers are most interested in the technology features that make up the basics of autonomous vehicles, such as radar, light detection and ranging (LIDAR), cameras, night vision, lane change assist, traffic jam assist, and more. However, the trust of fully autonomous vehicles is directly linked to age. 

More than half of Generation Y (56 percent) and Z (55 percent) said they trust autonomous technology, while just 41 percent of Generation X, 23 percent of Baby Boomers, and 18 percent of pre-Boomers said they trust the technology. 

"The level of trust is directly linked to the level of interest in a new technology among automobile buyers," said Kristin Kolodge, executive director of driver interaction & HMI research at J.D. Power. "Acceptance can be increased with exposure over time and experience with automated technologies. But trust is fragile and can be broken if there is an excessive number of incidents with automated vehicles."

All generations share a concern in technology security, including privacy and hacking concerns. 

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