What Factors Affect The Auto Industry

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Henry Ford, with his genius concepts of the assembly line and interchangeable parts, create the American auto industry in Detroit in the early 1900’s. Throughout the 20th century, the industry flourished and floundered. Numerous unique factors impact the auto industry. Below is a summary of the following factors as they relate to the auto industry: government regulations, the US economy and globalization, technology, and socio-cultural influences.
Government Regulations
While Americans have historically loved automobiles, they also perceive them as quite deadly. It is common knowledge that a person is more likely to die in a car accident than in an airplane crash. In fact, there were 30,800 fatal motor vehicle crashes in the United States in 2012 (Lists of Motor Vehicle Deaths by Year, Wikipedia). This dangerous perception prompted the government to establish the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in 1970 and its first action was to mandate seat belts. Today NHTSA has three categories of safety codes: crash avoidance, crash worthiness, and crash survivability. There are 38 crash avoidance standards. Some examples are windshield wiping and washing, air brake systems, and rear and side view mirrors. There are 26 standards for the crash
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To stay competitive, car manufacturers must use new technology to increase production efficiency. Joe Barkai, Practice Director, Product Lifecycle Strategies at IDC Manufacturing Insights stated, “It is clear, based on our research, the manufacturing process must be improved dramatically in order to meet the economic and technology challenges of 21st-century global manufacturing” (SCMR Staff, 2010). Features of new car factories include moving assembly lines and robotics. Car design also integrates new technology to increase safety, efficiency, and comfort. These features include automatic braking, voice recognition, and

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