I was reading an article and I came across this sentence:


What exactly does the か in this sentence/what is the meaning?


This か is the same as the particle we see all the time at the end of an interrogative sentence. It's also used in a noun clause like so:

  • いつ車を売りますか? When do they sell the cars?
    いつ車を売るか (noun clause) when they sell the cars
  • 今日は日曜日ですか? Is it Sunday today?
    今日は日曜日か (noun clause) whether it is Sunday today

Therefore, "車の会社がいつごろこのような自動運転の車を売り始めるか" is a long noun clause which means "when the automobile companies begin to sell those self-driving cars."

I found a related question with an extensive answer: Usage of か after a clause?


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