The 2020 edition of the AVRI assesses 30 countries and jurisdictions. This includes the addition of five new countries and jurisdictions to the roster from 2019, and can explain some of the downward movement of some countries as a result. The AVRI uses 28 different measures, organized into four pillars: policy and legislation, technology and innovation, infrastructure and consumer acceptance. Four of the variables are scored for this index by KPMG International and ESI ThoughtLab and 24 draw on existing research by KPMG International and other organizations. Details can be found in the Appendix of the full report (PDF 3.2 MB).
- For the first time Singapore leads the AVRI, overtaking the Netherlands for the top-ranked position and leading on both the consumer acceptance and policy and legislation pillars.
- The city-state has expanded AV testing to cover all public roads in western Singapore and aims to serve three areas with driverless buses from 2022.
- The number of charging points will increase from 1,600 to 28,000 by 2030 with incentives for buying EVs, although the government is also phasing in a usage tax to compensate for loss of fuel excise duties. Given they will be mostly electric, such moves are vital in enabling AV implementation.
2. The Netherlands
- The Netherlands retains top ranking on the infrastructure pillar, leading on EV charging stations per capita and second only to Singapore on road quality.
- An extensive series of pilots means that 81 percent of people live near AV testing sites. However, tests on truck platooning in July 2019 found challenges in keeping vehicles connected at all times.
- 2019 saw the Netherlands extending its use of smart road furniture, including traffic lights that send their statuses wirelessly to AVs in 60 new areas of the country.
- Norway extended its use of AVs in 2019, with several bus routes in Oslo now driverless, and the speed limit for driverless vehicles on roads increasing from 16kph to 20kph.
- A majority of passenger vehicles bought in Norway in 2019 were battery or plug-in hybrids, as a result of high taxes on internal combustion vehicles and fuels and subsidies for EVs.
- The country is testing AVs in extreme weather, with pilots of driverless trucks, cars and buses on the snow-bound Svalbard islands in the Arctic Circle.
4. United States
- The US is second only to Israel on technology and innovation, with 420 AV company headquarters, 44 percent of all of those tracked in this research.
- American technology companies, including Apple and Google's Waymo unit, and vehicle makers such as General Motors and Ford, continue to dominate AV development. GM’s Cruise division unveiled the Origin, a purpose-built self-driving car designed for ride-sharing.
- Cities including Detroit and Pittsburgh are undertaking innovative work to introduce and promote AVs (both are profiled in the Cities to watch section).
- Finland has the highest ratings for AV-specific regulations and for the efficiency of its legal system in challenging regulations, and its entire road network is open for AV trials.
- Helsinki (profiled in Cities to watch) and its neighbor Espoo both run public AV bus services, with the latter using an all-weather vehicle designed by local company Sensible 4.
- Finland also leads on measures of digital skills, benefiting from a breadth of talented engineers, many of whom have notable experience having been part of Nokia’s legacy. It also makes the greatest use of ride-hailing services.