In Depth

Why Jaguar Land Rover may pay cryptocurrency to helpful drivers

Motorists could earn virtual coins by reporting potholes and congested roads

Jaguar Land Rover has announced plans to reward drivers who record information about their journeys with payments made in cryptocurrency. 

The British carmaker is developing “smart wallet” technology that could be installed in its new vehicles, Reuters reports. A digital currency called Iota would then be paid into this virtual coin storage system every time the driver submits information on potholes or congested roads to navigation firms and local councils, the news site says. 

The carmaker has yet to confirm how much drivers could earn, but news site Motoring Research claims that the car owners would be able to spend their digital money “on toll fees, parking, electric car charging – and even coffee”. 

JLR claims the scheme will help cut down traffic and encourage local councils to improve road conditions. And if the plan were to reduce congestion, both vehicle emissions and the number of road accidents would also drop, the carmaker adds. 

But Top Gear argues that the scheme is “flawed”. In Britain, “there are more potholes than there are traffic lights”, and councils just don’t have to cash to repair them all, the site says.  

Despite such criticisms, JLR has begun trialling the system on roads around its engineering site in Shannon, Ireland, in a fleet of Jaguar F-Pace and Range Rover Velar test vehicles, Autocar reports. 

Do other carmakers offer customers opportunities to make cash? 

The practice of paying customers is a relatively new trend that few manufacturers have embraced as yet. 

Last week, Tesla chief executive Elon Musk announced plans to launch a self-driving “robotaxi” service using the company’s current line-up of electric cars. 

The service, which Musk hopes to launch next year, is similar to apps such as Airbnb, with car owners temporarily “loaning out” their autonomous vehicles while they pick up and ferry around passengers, The Daily Telegraph reports. 

The tech tycoon said that drivers could make $30,000 (£23,100) a year under the scheme, with Tesla taking a 25% to 30% cut. 

Recommended

Bentley Mulliner Bacalar: a boon for the super-rich
Bentley Mulliner Bacalar  © Bentley
The wish list

Bentley Mulliner Bacalar: a boon for the super-rich

Rolls-Royce and Hermès create a ‘truly one-of-a-kind’ Phantom
Rolls-Royce and Hermès bespoke Phantom Oribe
In pictures

Rolls-Royce and Hermès create a ‘truly one-of-a-kind’ Phantom

BMW M4 Competition: not for a shrinking violet
Prices for the BMW M4 Competition start from £76,115
The wish list

BMW M4 Competition: not for a shrinking violet

Bugatti Chiron Pur Sport: a ‘comically savage’ £3.4m hypercar
Bugatti Chiron Pur Sport
The wish list

Bugatti Chiron Pur Sport: a ‘comically savage’ £3.4m hypercar

Popular articles

London mayoral race 2021: who will win?
Night Tube Sadiq Khan
In Depth

London mayoral race 2021: who will win?

Laurence Fox to Count Binface: the most colourful London mayor candidates
Count Binface
Behind the scenes

Laurence Fox to Count Binface: the most colourful London mayor candidates

TV crime dramas to watch in 2021
Chris Rock stars in the fourth series of Fargo
In Review

TV crime dramas to watch in 2021