This article was originally on The ride.
Ferrari is perhaps the most famous supercar manufacturer in the world because it has a long history of making cars that people want to drive – not necessarily be driven in. During a discussion on the Financial times Future of the Car Summit, Ferrari CEO Benedetto Vigna didn’t mince words about how the automaker feels about self-driving cars. “There are four types of software. There is performance software, there is comfort software, there is infotainment software and there is autonomous,” said Vigna. “The last one, we don’t care.”
It’s not the first time the brand has said no AVs. Past executives have made many similar statements in the media. However, the car manufacturer is developing an electric vehicle and says it has the expertise to make this happen. In the case of AVs, the company probably not only was not interested in developing the idea out of principle, but also lacked the resources to do so independently.
Business Insider reports that Vigna referred to the “soul of the car” in conversation. Indeed, a Ferrari without a driver wouldn’t be a Ferrari at all. The brand is its own master after not participating in the merger of FCA and PSA which created Stellantis. That means it doesn’t get high guidelines to develop AVs and it has other companies in its portfolio with which to easily share advanced technical resources.
Most other exotic automakers are under the umbrella of a larger automaker. In most cases it is the Volkswagen group, owner of Porsche, Lamborghini and the newly merged Bugatti-Rimac. These companies could make AVs, or at least use technology from their parent company to make them. Others like McLaren—who are struggling financially– and Koenigsegg, which has a very low volume and concentrates most of its resources on vehicle technology, are unlikely to make self-driving cars on their own. Driver assistance systems can be developed independently or licensed by other companies, but self-driving seems far-fetched to say the least.