The emergence of self-driving vehicles will lead to a rise in car sex, says a new study.

According to the most recent issue of the journal Annals of Tourism Research, people using self-driving cars will be more likely to eat, drink, sleep and engage in sexual activity as robot cars become the new norm.

Scott Cohen, who led the study, told Fast Company magazine "People will be sleeping in their vehicles, which has implications for roadside hotels. And people may be eating in vehicles that function as restaurant pods".

The report also predicts the self-driving vehicles will soon put prostitution on wheels.

Advertisement

"That led us to think, besides sleeping, what other things will people do in cars when free from the task of driving? And you can see that in the long association of automobiles and sex that's represented in just about every coming-of-age movie. It's not a big leap," he said.

"It's not impossible or that far-fetched to imagine the red light district on the move. Prostitution doesn't need to be legal for this to happen. Plenty of illegal activities happen in cars."

According to the report about 60 per cent of Americans have already had sex in a car.

"Where prostitution is legal, and regulations allow AVs to develop fast and be on roads quickly, we could see this come together rapidly. Europe is one of those places."