The Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) has revealed that Formula 1 could adopt a driverless safety car in an attempt to popularise autonomous vehicles.
Talking to Autosport, Marcin Budkowski, head of FIA’s F1 technical department stated “It would promote a technology about which there is a bit of scepticism and, instead, it could be shown that it works.
“The safety car driver would no longer be essential, because it would leave the controls to the computer. But we must be aware of the attraction of [F1] race cars without drivers: the engineers would love it, but not the fans.”
Although Marcin did state he was sceptical about fan reaction to driverless technology on an F1 track, he does feel that other series such as Roborace (Formulae E) have a huge part to play in promoting automatous driving technology.
“I see it [Formula E] as a very interesting thing, which pushes things in one direction, but can this idea of having no F1 driver captivate millions around the world? Frankly I have doubts.
“However, using the motorsport platform to promote to the public new technologies, like an unmanned safety car, or events like Roborace, can be fantastic in exploring the possibility of new solutions.” stated Budkowski.
Is an unmanned safety car on the cards or will it never come to fruition? We’ll let you decide.