Arthur D. LittleArthur D. Little

Industries / Automotive

Developments in the Automotive Industry pose difficult questions for market players. Arthur D. Little's Automotive Practice works with you to develop and implement the necessary innovative solutions.

A tough market

The automotive industry faces a number of tough challenges:

  • Growth occurs mainly outside the triade markets, so successful companies require a truly global footprint
  • An increasing number of model variants become necessary to cover chosen market segments and needs/preferences in different markets
  • High legal demands and pressure for better fuel economy, lower emissions and greater safety. As an automotive player, you need to keep track in the technology race to provide better or new functionality, selecting the "right" innovations, shortening development cycles and constantly increasing the efficiency of engineering resources
  • Global overcapacity and new competitors from emerging markets mean that there is "no light at the end of the tunnel" regarding discounts and price wars. As a result, all partners in the value chain face even higher pressure on costs
  • Management has to fulfill the short-term expectations of the financial markets without harming the future base of competition

For players across the industry, these challenges pose two fundamental questions: "How to innovate the business?" and "How to master complexity?"

How we can help

Arthur D. Little's global Automotive and Manufacturing Group (which brings together the firm's Automotive and Manufacturing practices) helps you find answers to these questions and works closely with you to ensure successful implementation.

Our expertise is based on three pillars:

  • Deep knowledge of the automotive and manufacturing industries
    • we employ a high proportion of consultants with industry background, complemented by former CxOs as advisors and freelancers
    • we undertake studies on industry trends and special issues related to innovation and complexity management
  • We provide tailored solutions
    • through various partnerships with leading research institutes and universities
    • by leveraging the vast technology expertise of the ALTRAN group with more than 16,000 consultants in 40 countries globally
    • though partnering with selected service providers with a complementary "best-of-breed" know-how and skill-base
  • We make it happen
    • by leveraging our Global Advisory Networks
    • by our pragmatic work-style
    • by sound conceptual work, based on proven methodologies, combined with the know-how to enable organisations (in over 80 per cent of our projects we also play a role in the final implementation)

Find out more about our Services.

The entire automotive industry is facing historical challenges

In addition to those of the economic crisis which have already forced some major players to go bankrupt.

  • Discussions concerning climate change and emissions reduction, as well as the increasingly tough consumption and emissions targets, have led to a segment shift from the upper segments with strong margins, to the lower segment with relatively weaker margins.
  • Additionally, automotive manufacturers and suppliers will incur substantial expenditure in the development of the required technologies, based either on conventional drivetrains or on alternative drivetrains such as e-traction.
  • Growth potential exists almost solely in the emerging markets. However companies in these markets need to introduce different product concepts and prices to the existing product portfolios of the existing manufacturers.
  • New competitors are keen to enter the market and will rapidly play an important role in the volume segment, even aiming for a leadership role, for example, China in the area of electronic drivetrains.
  • Customer requirements in the triad markets will change: the relevance of car ownership as a status symbol will reduce and on average the available budget for car purchase and its utilization will decrease.
  • Innovative mobility concepts will evolve, offering new opportunities for the OEMs on one hand, while inducing change for the automotive suppliers and attracting new competitors from outside of the automotive industry, on the other.
  • Consequently today's automotive market will develop to a mobility market, from which significant adjustments to existing and new business models will arise. The existing market players will undertake a transformation and new players will enter the market. As a result we can expect a change to the structure of the entire automotive industry. Today's players, as well as potential new entrants, will need to adapt to the new framework to achieve sustainable success.

We support the leading automotive manufacturers and suppliers in mastering these challenges, resulting in optimal alignment with the future of the automotive industry.


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