09 Dec The Future of Cars & the Auto Industry
No doubt electric and self-driving cars are the future of the auto industry. Tesla has blazed a trial by demonstrating car manufactures can think and be innovative again. An auto industry revolution is taking place. Who will be the future car manufactures? It may or may not be the well-known and existing car manufactures. Companies like Tesla and Faraday Future are coming online in rapid proportion and making major progress. And, they are not the only one’s. Companies from China like WM Motors and Kandi Technologies (Symbol: KNDI) are also building fully electric and technology-focused cars. It has taken a long time to see such rapid changes and innovation in the auto industry. But, evidence is clearly showing that will not be the case in 2017 and moving forward.
Convergence of Artificial Intelligence (AI), Robotics, and GPS
Still, one of the biggest problems with cars today is that they all look-alike and have very similar features. Unless you are able to spend over $100,000, your car probably looks the same as the car sitting at the traffic light right next to you. Regardless of make or model, copycat designs continue to plague the big car manufactures. However, moving forward, it will be interesting to see the convergence of artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, and GPS being added to the cars and the car manufacturing process. Lines of code and electronics telling the car what to do, where to go, when to go, and when to stop is just the tip of the iceberg.It is not far-fetched to imagine robotics integrated into the car itself, not just on the assembly line. Click To Tweet
Auto Repair Services Industry
Obviously, other industries like energy will be greatly affected by innovation that is happening in the auto industry. A more “under the radar screen” but equally important change will be in auto repair and auto body services. Skilled workers with knowledge of computer science, electrical engineering, and other highly technical skills will be needed to repair these high-tech cars. No more simply taking a wrench to your car and fixing it yourself as a DIY project. The cost of repairing a car will increase exponentially. Currently, the average annual cost to repair a car in the U.S. is approximately $766.50. With over 248.7 million cars on the road, that equates to $190 billion a year auto repair service industry in the U.S. alone. Hopefully, fewer accidents and better quality materials will offset the need for so many repairs. But, What does this mean for auto repair shop and auto body shop owners?
|Number of Registered Vehicles in US||Car Ownership Statistic|
|Number of vehicles (cars & light trucks) registered (VIO) in United States, 2012||248.7 million|
|Number of Tesla cars registered in the US (through July, 2016)||71,000|
Data: United States Vehicle Ownership Data by Hedges & Company
The current number or auto repair and maintenance shops in the U.S. has been hovering around 227,000 for a long-time. I suspect this will change drastically over the next 10-years. In addition, manufactures will most-likely drive the consumer back to them for auto repairs and auto body work since it is such a large part of the auto industry’s revenue. I suspect much more centralization moving forward due to this wave of innovation in the auto industry. Most traditional auto repair shops will not be able to keep up with the cost (special equipment and labor), and the demands of such high-tech cars. In turn, auto repair shops will be forced to work for the manufactures or larger entities that can afford the equipment and continuous education that will be needed unless they are willing to start innovating as well.Have you tried getting your Tesla repaired by your own mechanic? Click To Tweet
Car Repair Experience
Case in point, a friend of mine owns a Tesla, and he recently went to a local tire shop to get a flat tire fix. The tire shop would not touch his tire because the tire was made of different material than your typical tire. And, they were concerned with negatively impacting the car’s electronics. He went to another tire shop down the road and they plugged the tire for him. But, before working on the tire they gave him a disclosure that it might not work, and they don’t have a certified person on staff to handle such a situation.
Big Opportunities in the Auto Repair Industry
Two huge opportunities exist in the auto repair industry for…
- Those willing to take on the challenge of innovating the auto repair services and parts industry.
- Those car manufactures that are willing to be inclusive instead of exclusive in their business model.
High-tech car manufactures will need skilled and tech savvy people to fix and provide maintenance on their customer’s cars. How this gets accomplished on a grand scale is yet to be determined. But, one this is for sure, big change is on the horizon for not only the auto manufactures, but for energy companies and auto service companies.
More Information on Faraday Future
We are excited to see and learn what Faraday Future and others have planned for the auto consumers. Things are getting exciting!
Faraday Future Website: ff.com
Follow Faraday Future on Twitter: @FaradayFuture
- Statista.com – Number of Auto Repair Shops in U.S. Alone
- Average Annual Cost to Repair a Car by AAA
- United States Vehicle Ownership Data by Hedges & Company
- In China’s electric car boom, global automakers select different gear
- Taking on Tesla: China’s WM Motor sees mass market electric cars