The automotive industry is one in which change has been the name of the game in recent years. The industry has changed at a faster pace in the past ten years than in the 100 years before that. 5 G connectivity, electrification, autonomous vehicles, advanced safety features, new concepts in tire design, blockchain technology – there is no area of the automotive industry that has not been touched by change. This year’s theme for the Audi Innovation Award is simplification and this helps us to remember the core concept that the purpose of all these innovations is to make life simpler and more convenient for the end user.
The most advanced technology is of no use if it does not offer any advantage to the end user and makes life easier on the road. At the end of the day, all the companies in the automotive sector who are pouring billions into research and development need to ask themselves what their desired outcome is.
There are plenty of products that raised a lot of expectations and cost a lot but failed to work. Two recent examples that come to mind include Tata Nano and the Chrysler turbine car. That does not of course mean that automakers should not experiment or innovate. It does however mean that a technology or model would only become popular if it offers something that the customer truly values. I think Audi is on the right track with the simplification theme. What about you?
Hamid Moaref has always been fascinated by cars and the automotive industry. His family has a longstanding association with the industry and has been in the tire business for the past 35 years. Raised in Dubai, Hamid attended Capilano University in Vancouver where he graduated with a BBA in marketing before attending an intensive course in magazine publishing in 2005. He has been the publisher and chief editor of Tires & Parts magazine for the past ten years.
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