Illustration for article titled Important Predictions For The World Of Cars In 2020

I’ve been making predictions about the future of cars for a number of years now, and if you don’t count the ones that didn’t actually come to pass, my success rate is a staggering one hundred percent. As you can imagine, with that record, I can’t stop now, so clamp your buttocks firmly together and prepare yourself to get mind-scrambled with all-new predictions for 2020!

Are you ready? Tough shit, here we go!

1. Waymo will reveal that their computer-model-based testing of autonomous vehicles has already brutally killed over seven million Sims.

2. In the latter part of the year, there will be a proposal from at least one state for a new type of reduced-skill drivers’ license that restricts the bearer to cars with a certain level of driver-assist tools like lane keeping, dynamic cruise, blind-spot monitoring, etc.

3. Okay, finally, this will be the Year of the Tweel.

4. The used car market will be flooded by a mass dumping of the U.S. Postal Service’s full fleet of 163,000 Grumman LLVs once the new Next Generation Delivery Vehicle is ready, ideally sometime in 2020. This will be the best car-related news of the year.

5. Tesla will upgrade its Smart Summon feature with a Smart Loiter mode that will allow properly-equipped Teslas to just circle full parking lots and airports without having to actually park. By November 2020, up to 18% of LAX intra-airport automobile traffic will be Teslas driving around driverless.

6. The “rolling coal” phenomenon, the one that used diesel trucks modified to belch clouds of black smoke in an attempt to piss off/antagonize hybrid and EV drivers will evolve. The 2020 iteration will be people in electric cars towing small coal-burning generators to make electricity, which will be burning literal coal and belching clouds of real coal smoke. It is not entirely clear who they will be attempting to antagonize.

7. Increased adoption of roundabouts in America will spawn the formation of powerful Traffic Light Lobbies, which will produce many television ads hyping the perceived dangers of roundabouts and suggesting roundabouts are associated with a sort of European decadence and presenting conventional traffic lights as “more American.”

8. Ford will have success with the Mustang Mach-e name, prompting them to investigate heritage names worthy of resurrection for other new EV models, but a clerical error will cause them to put all their efforts into three main new model names: Asipir-E, ePinto, and Electric Probe.

9. Unknown but benevolent aliens will beam plans directly to the corporate servers of Frito-Lay for a small anti-gravity pod-like transportation device capable of moving with impunity in three-dimensions that is fueled on mammalian biowaste.

Frito-Lay will spin off a subsidiary to build these in quantity, selling a four-person pod for $2,500. Every website will call it a “flying car.”

10. Dire reports on imminent ocean level rising will cause a surge in new amphibious vehicle development, which will lay the groundwork for a utopian future filled with amphibious cars.

11. The Tesla Cybertruck will become so popular as a drivable car in video games that all of the GPU processing power saved by only having to render a vehicle with a handful of polygons will be repurposed to computational-intensive tasks, which will likely lead to either a cure for cancer or a viable nuclear fusion reactor design before the end of the year.

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus • Not-so-running: 1973 Reliant Scimitar, 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!)

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