According to Audi AG, the second largest luxury automaker in the world, global peers are heading towards a fundamental industry revolution as electronics and digital features are increasingly important.
The German carmaker, a brand that belongs to Volkswagen Ag, the second largest automaker in the world and the biggest in Europe, forecasts the electronics and digital features will grow in importance to match the level attributed to horsepower today as the industry shift is yielding new competitors and potential alliances. “By 2020, 50 percent of value creation will be based on apps, software, electronic systems and digital services,” and opportunities are “endless. This will totally change our industry and our offering,” commented Luca de Meo, Audi’s sales boss, as the automaker was gearing up for the Consumer Electronics Show in Shanghai. Audi, together with archrivals BMW and Mercedes-Benz have established an industry consortium – currently open to other automakers – that seeks to bid for Nokia Oyj’s HERE digital-map services unit, clashing with technology companies across the world. The traditional auto industry has been hard at work integrating this past few years technologies such as in-car connectivity and autonomous driving.
Volkswagen Ag, for example, has since last year a task force designed to hasten the adoption of new technologies in upcoming models. The company recently announced its Car-Net system will now bundle applications designed to be used by drivers in the cars in conjunction with the smartphones or tablets that make use of the Google Android Auto or Apple CarPlay software.