University of Twente Student Theses


Mobility 4.0: Are Consumers Ready to Adopt Google's Self-driving Car?

Nordhoff, Sina (2014) Mobility 4.0: Are Consumers Ready to Adopt Google's Self-driving Car?

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Abstract:Context: Given the huge performance potential of automated driving systems, other nonautomotive players such as technology companies with Google in the lead pursue the idea of selfdriving cars. Whereas traditional industry incumbents such as Mercedes-Benz, VW and BMW work on the development of semi-autonomous driving systems that assist the driver with the driving task, Google intends to bring fully-autonomous vehicles to market that does not only help but completely replace the driver whose role shifts from being an active driver to a mere car passenger that is chauffeured around from A to B. Objective: This study examines to what extent consumers are prepared to adopt Google’s selfdriving car instead of a conventional vehicle and what factors influence variation in consumers’ adoption intentions. Therefore, this study proposes and tests a research model that integrates concepts present in the technology acceptance management literature and consults previous research on automated driving systems. Method: To explore consumers’ perceptions of Google’s self-driving car, a qualitative content analysis of blog data was conducted. The results of the content analysis and previous research findings were used to develop an online questionnaire that yielded 421 valid cases. Thereby, the qualitative data can be cross-checked by the survey results which increases the trustworthiness of research findings. Results: By means of Pearson product-moment correlation coefficients, the results indicate significant relationships between the constructs assessed, showing that the intention to adopt Google's self-driving car instead of a conventional vehicle is influenced by the characteristics of the innovation, the personality of the individual, the driving environment as well as Google’s corporate reputation. Stepwise multiple linear regression analysis demonstrated that perceived usefulness was the strongest significant predictor of adoption intention, accounting for 60,8% of the variance in behavioural intention. Questionnaire item „The whole point of owning a car is independence and driving enjoyment. I'm never letting Google's self-driving car do my driving“ accounted for an additional 10,2% of the variance in adoption intention. Conclusion: This is the most comprehensive and up-to-date study of the main drivers that influence variation in consumers’ intention to adopt Google’s self-driving car instead of a conventional vehicle. Future scholars could return to this framework and validate it in other cultural contexts or with different types of consumers.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Business Administration MSc (60644)
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