Mercedes, Infiniti Owners Most Interested in Buying Autonomous Cars, Survey Finds

Porsche and BMW drivers are least tempted by self-driving vehicles

It's hard to argue with the fact that cars will be autonomous in the future, but it is still early to anticipate how people will receive them.

Being removed from the steering wheel is not something driving enthusiasts are looking forward to, but it seems that fans of some car brands are more likely to embrace a future of autonomous cars than others.

According to a survey from software and research firm MaritzCX cited by Bloomberg, Mercedes-Benz and Infiniti owners are more willing than most drivers to let robots do the driving.

Approximately 27 percent of Mercedes-Benz and Infiniti owners declared themselves "very interested" in buying an autonomous car when the technology becomes available. That is partly due to both brand's more aggressive marketing of their vehicles' existing semi-autonomous features and upcoming fully-autonomous models, like the Mercedes-Benz F 015 Luxury in Motion concept pictured here.

At the other end of the spectrum, owners of Jeep SUVs and Ram pickups were the least interested in self-driving cars.

Apparently, owners of luxury vehicles are more open to the autonomous technology because they believe it would improve safety. However, not all luxury cars drivers are ready to give up control. 57 percent of Porsche owners and 56 percent of BMW owners said they were not interested in buying self-driving cars.

Overall, about half of consumers taking part in the survey (48 percent) replied they weren't interested in buying an autonomous car, although 94 percent of them were aware self-driving cars are coming. Even among Mercedes and Infiniti, more owners rejected rather than accepted the technology.

It seems that automakers will have a hard time convincing buyers to accept driverless vehicles. The top concerns among those surveyed are equipment failure, autonomous cars getting lost, hackers taking over control, legal liability, as well as avoiding pedestrians and bicyclists.

MaritzCX surveyed 12,353 vehicle owners from May through August.