Cars still depend on us to drive, but we're becoming less dependable
The more cars perform basic skills for us, the less we remember how to perform, uh, basic skills. For example, ever heard of threshold braking? It's a driving technique that was mostly rendered obsolete when anti-lock brake systems rolled around. Just think about what happens as more and more cars like the BMW i3 hit the road. Steering and lane-keeping assistance, radar and windshield cameras, active braking and autopilot... even our most basic driving skills will gradually start to erode.
Not to mention our attention spans. As the head of Google's self-driving car program told Road & Track, "It's the conundrum of this technology: the better you make it, the more relaxed the human agent behind the wheel becomes. And the more relaxed you become, the less attentive you are."
Case in point, the Tesla autopilot is a driver aid, albeit an advanced one. Drivers don't understand that -- they switch it on and cool their heels, fall asleep, or worse, crash. When you take mental shortcuts and give up crucial components of your decision-making ability, you shift the psychological responsibility to the car itself... but the legal and physical consequences haven't shifted in the slightest.