Autonomous vehicles: a challenge and an opportunity for the rail sector

JUN 2017

Autonomous driving is expected to transform mobility in the coming decades. While the impact on road transport seems quite straightforward, consequences for the rail sector are less obvious. On the one hand, autonomous vehicles may result in a reduction of rail’s market share. On the other hand, they could provide a stimulus for further development in the sector in an increasingly multimodal context.  This was the key message put forward at the RFE dinner event, held in the European Parliament in Brussels on 19 June and sponsored by Transdev.

Keir Fitch (DG MOVE Head of Unit on rail safety and interoperability) said: “Rail will continue to play a major role in the future, as autonomous vehicles do not have the capacity to replace mass transit public transport. Policy measures should therefore aim to optimize the ongoing revolution and ensure the right multimodal mix in the future”.

Presentations and press releases from this event are available here

UNIFE Involved


  • World Rail Market Study

    The Study is a reference for the rail sector and is regularly referred to as a standard set of data for the rail supply industry.
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