The Boston Consulting Group in its recently published research report revealed that the automotive industry is venturing into a golden era of innovation driven by factors such as regulatory mandates, changing customer expectations and newer technologies.
Xavier Mosquet, a BCG senior partner and coauthor of the study, said, “Innovation in the automotive industry is retaking center stage. Consumers want to buy cars from companies that bring new technologies to market, and connectivity, safety, and fuel efficiency are three of their top priorities. The ability to innovate in these areas will be a major factor in individual automakers' success in the coming years.”
Some of the highlights of the research report include:
- In 2005 there were only five automotive companies that were ranked as the top 50 innovative companies and in 2013 the number has increased to fourteen with BMW, Toyota and Ford finding their places in the top ten;
- the top ranked automotive innovators have supposedly increased their research and development spending along with the increase in the number of patents filed;
- power train, lightweight materials, connectivity, and active safety and assisted driving were the fields that were said to be focus of innovation;
- most customers polled in the United States were more inclined to buy a car from an automaker that demonstrated its innovations with preference shown to newer technology inventions;
- innovations in connectivity, safety, and fuel economy sectors seemed to attract more U.S. customers; and more.
Massimo Russo, a BCG senior partner and coauthor of the study, added, “Other areas of innovation loom large as well, such as alternative fuels and assisted driving. Those automakers that determine how to organize themselves to harness and direct fast-moving developments in power train, lightweight materials, and, most critically, software, electronic components, and connectivity will establish a decided advantage over competitors in the near and longer term.”