The coincidence of the 2008 energy crisis and a global economic downturn changed the automotive industry as we know it and forced a change in vehicle purchase behaviour.
Overlayed on this fundamental change was the growing uncertainty over which powertrain or future fuel path to invest in, coupled with a shift in direction of the car ownership and usage models, and a completely new attitude towards brand and brand loyalty from the younger generation who have grown up amidst the telecommunications revolution. In the resultant turmoil a few automotive giants ran over the edge of a commercial cliff and the automotive sector has emerged as an industry which is now focusing on a new direction in both their business models and their product strategy.
Manufacturers are now having to compete in new dimensions in an arena where the old business model of high investment, single-model strategy and very high annual volumes has largely collapsed. The new direction calls for innovation and modularisation in both manufacturing and product. When a modular architecture is introduced, integration will no longer be a crucial factor in the success of the business, and we will open up multi-niche opportunities.
Against this complex background of change and disintegration of business models, opportunities are being created for both OEMs who are open to change and new entrants to the sector alike.