The 23rd edition of the KPMG Global Automotive Executive Survey comes at a momentous time for the industry. Every facet of automotive— from product development, to manufacturing, to supply chains and the customer experience— is undergoing profound changes, driven by the powerful convergence of the automotive and technology sectors.
A year ago, automotive executives sensed a change was coming and the future was theirs to seize. In the latest survey, translated into 20 languages, more than 900 executives in 30 countries remain optimistic, but the mood is tempered by realism. The exciting future is no longer theoretical—more than half a trillion dollars have been committed to developing a dazzling array of new vehicles built in advanced manufacturing facilities. They are investing in electric-battery plants, semiconductors, autonomous systems, software, and electronics.
To deliver on the promise of those billions of investments, car companies will take many roads to their destination. Some roads will lead to success, others could end in abject failure. To enable executives to navigate the future, the survey findings help frame some strategic questions:
- Should we go it alone, form alliances, or do joint ventures? With whom and who?
- How should we allocate capital among our different powertrain ecosystems?
- What role will contract manufacturing play in the future of the industry?
- What does a reimagined customer experience look like?
- How important should autonomous systems be to our strategy?
These and other questions are growing more urgent by the day, as competition intensifies. For some, the answer is the status quo. For others, it is diversification and being a fast follower. For still others, the path is to be bold and go all-in with new operating models. Strategic flexibility has never been more important. So yes, some roads will lead to success and others will end in failure. For the executives who responded to our survey, the future is in their hands.
Global Head of Automotive
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KPMG’s 23rd Annual Global Automotive Executive Survey (Web article)
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