Automobile manufacturers face two great challenges: electrification and softwarization.
The global industry rose to the electrification challenge with innovation after innovation. Globally, 14% of new cars sold in 2022 were electric, almost triple the number sold in 2020, with China accounting for more than half of all electric vehicles sold worldwide. In the U.S., nearly 6% of new cars purchased were electric, doubling the amount sold in 2021. At least one study has suggested that 5% is a tipping point, after which sales speed up.
The next big challenge that’s coming fast is softwarization: the use of a software solution, rather than traditional hardware, to solve a problem. This is perhaps an even harder problem because it requires a fundamental shift in how manufacturers think about themselves. Companies with a rich history of producing brilliant pieces of hardware may find it hard to imagine themselves as a computer or an AI company. But, as the auto industry moves closer to making smart devices with wheels, they must.
Globally, auto makers are already investing billions in AI, and that number is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22.7% from 2023 to 2030. To date, AI is routinely used in product design and planning, warranty management, building long-term customer relationships, and more.
The next frontier is Generative AI, which can create code, digital content, simulations, and more. As the automotive industry progresses towards smart devices with wheels, manufacturers must embrace tools that empower them to quickly develop, deploy and maintain software — and that’s exactly the power that Generative AI brings to the table.