Car of the Future

The Car of the Future

“What do you want to know about the car of the future?

For a hundred years our lives have been shaped by the automobile. Ready access to rapid point-to-point travel has changed the way we live, work, shop, and shaped the spaces in which we live. What is the future of the car? And what does the car of the future look like?

Here I have collected a selection of my work on the future car, following engagements with brands including Audi, BMW, Ford, Auto Trader, as well as a huge range of organisations associated with transport: city planners, insurers, technology companies and more. I’ve tried to answer your most frequently asked questions, like ‘Will we ever have self-driving cars?’

Frequently Asked Questions

Futurist Tom Cheesewright in replica of the DeLorean from Back to the Future

Futurist Tom Cheesewright, freshly back from the future!

Auto Trader: Car of the Future

“What will we be driving in ten, twenty, or thirty years? Will we be driving at all? 

These were the questions posed me by Auto Trader for its Car of the Future report. To answer them, I looked at the pressures facing the car industry, drivers, pedestrians, and cities, as well as the incoming technologies and trends that might alleviate – or exacerbate – these pressures. 

The result is a sketch of the future car looking out over three decades, from near-term changes in propulsion, construction and design, to much later transitions to fully autonomous vehicles.

The report showed just how many people are still excited and otherwise exercised about the future car, a machine that for all the problems it has brought us remains a passion for many. It was featured in national press, across UK radio networks (with Tom as spokesperson), and even on the BBC News.”

render of the byd han electric vehicle

What will we be driving in the future?

“The car is core to our culture as well as our everyday home and working lives. We’ve become very familiar with its shape, controls, technology and the brands that build our cars. But could all this be about to change?

Inspired by the entry of Chinese manufacturer BYD into the European market, I wrote this post about how in the future we may choose cars from different brands but also of different shapes and sizes entirely.”

3d model of a car, transparent

Will we ever have self-driving cars?

“I’m always open to answering your questions, and one of the most popular I have had in recent years is about self-driving cars. For some people, the very idea is just a bit too sci-fi – and a bit scary! Will we ever really jump in a vehicle and just tell it where to take us?

My answer is a slightly cautious ‘yes’. Read this post to find out why I think we will indeed have self-driving cars, but why it is going to take a bit longer than people think. The hype has gotten a little out of hand!”

episode cover: flying car reality check

Are flying cars realistic?

“What feels more futuristic than that popular sci-fi film trope, the flying car. From Blade Runner to Back to the Future, films have had us fantasising about the flying car for decades. But are they realistic?

In this post I explore the prospect of the flying car. What do we even mean by that phrase? Is the technology feasible? And will we trust humans to fly over our heads? Read the post or listen to the podcast episode to find answers to all these questions and more.”

cars on a busy street

How will future cars change our cities?

“Our whole world is built around the car. It has changed the way we live, work, shop, and socialise. And we have designed our cities around them. As the car changes, so will our environment.

In this story I explore those changes. How will the shift to electric and autonomous vehicles affect our streets and the businesses that inhabit them?”

Can we do without cars?

“Cars are about more than just getting from A to B. For all their problems, they have become symbols of freedom, and our own mobile castles. Can we ever let them go as a result? And if so, what might the alternatives look like?

In this story I explore the challenges to the car and what it might take to prize the keys out of our fingers.”

Get in touch

Interested in engaging Tom around a project on the future of business? Get in touch via this form and someone will be back to you as soon as possible. Please provide as many details as you can about the project: is it speaking, writing, consulting or broadcasting – or maybe something else? What’s your timescale?

    Tom Cheesewright