The global autonomous vehicle market was $4.74 billion in 2017 and is estimated to reach $29.98 billion by 2023 at a compound annual growth rate 35.99% during the forecast period, according to Research and Markets (

The driving factors and the merits behind the high demand for autonomous vehicle globally are the increased fuel efficiency, safety and reduced CO2 emissions when compared to conventional or manually operated vehicles that are run by fuel causing high pollution to the environment, adds the research group. Also, human errors such as driver fatigue and stress leading to disastrous accidents can be reduced, which is also one of the driving factors.

However, apart from the aforementioned factors, one of the major constraints that hamper the growth of autonomous vehicles is the high risk of cyber security issues and legal challenges that the autonomous vehicle market faces, where the vehicle’s controlling software can be hacked and misused, according to Research and Markets.

SoftBank Vision Fund, a global conglomerate based in Tokyo has invested a lump sum of $2.25 billion in General Motors’ autonomous vehicle operation. This hefty deal will provide SoftBank with a 19.6% stake in GM cruise, which also includes two other companies LiDar and Strobe Incorporation, which GM has acquired.

On the other side, Ford Autonomous Vehicles, a part of Ford Motors and a new organization founded by the company has planned to invest $4 billion by 2023, which also includes $1 billion investment in an artificial intelligence company named Argo AI, mainly done to capitalize on the market opportunities and accelerate the growth of autonomous vehicle industry globally.