Well this is brave. The auto industry is trying to innovate itself through disruption. We don’t think the economics make sense though.
The general predication is that we’ll need 75% fewer cars over the next 10 years due to the advent of driverless cars and car sharing apps. Broadly speaking that will mean we’ll need 75% fewer people producing cars.
Ford has a 224,000 strong workforce. That means downsizing to around 60,000. That’s a lot of people on the social that someone is going to have to pay for (for sure its unlikely to be Google)
From Venturebeat: “Google and Tesla may be pushing full-speed ahead in their self-driving car development and testing, but auto manufacturers aren’t sitting idly by. Judging from the outputs of this week’s North American Auto Show in Detroit, as well as CES in Las Vegas last week, it’s clear that incumbent car companies are rising to the challenges of competing in an autonomous world.
Silicon Valley startups and tech giants are launching many threats to the traditional auto industry as part of the Collaborative Economy movement, from ride- and car-sharing platforms like Lyft, Uber, RelayRides, and Getaround, to more recent innovations of autonomous cars that will further enable ride access over car ownership from Google, Uber, and others.
This is forcing brands like GM, Ford, BMW, and Mercedes to reconsider their product offerings to focus more on becoming “mobility companies” that offer an array of services that satisfy the needs of their evolving customers. These pivots are evident in a host of recent announcements of partnerships, investments, and new programs:
- GM partners with Lyft on future autonomous car fleet, investing $500 million.
- Ford announces new car-sharing program that allows six people to lease one vehicle. The company is also launching “Go Ride,” a shared shuttle service that you summon with your mobile device, similar to UberPool and Lyft Line.
- BMW announces that it has sold 30,000 electric i3s, which also use the shared charging stations and are available in its “Drive Now” car-sharing programs.
- Mercedes-Benz uses “Drive Pilot” technologies in its 2017 E-Class to enable the car to follow other vehicles up to 130 mph, braking, accelerating, and steering without driver input needed.