Car sharing and self-driving cars to alter the face of the industry in the coming decade image

The expansion of car-sharing services will impact the auto manufacturers’ profits until 2021, but the arrival of the self-driving cars will have a greater effect, a study shows.

The upcoming trends in the automotive world will reshape the face of the industry and the traditional car manufacturers will have to react and readjust their strategy to face such changes. The growth of car-sharing services is already disrupting the current flow of the market, even if only by a small extent, but it could have a greater impact on the carmakers’ sales and profits in the next five years. It is expected that services like those offered by Avis Budget Group’s Zipcar and Daimler AG’s Car2Go would trim global vehicle sales by 550,000 in 2021 and cost manufacturers more than 8 billion in lost revenue, according to a recent survey released by Boston Consulting Group. The study shows that the impact of the car-sharing trend will be felt especially in Europe and the Asia-Pacific, rather than in North America. Here, automakers’ sales are predicted to shrink only by 52,000 units a year in 2021, due to car-sharing customers, but that will be offset by sales of 44,000 vehicles a year to car-sharing fleets, for a net loss of only 8,000 vehicles at a cost of just over 500 million dollars, Boston Consulting Group said.

On the long-term, the researchers believe that the autonomous vehicles will have a much greater impact on new-car sales than car-sharing will, but not until 2027. However, the study did not explore the short-term impact of ride-hailing services such as Uber and Lyft, but concluded that car-sharing will not be “a true game changer, but self-driving cars will change the game, erasing the distinction between car-sharing and ride-hailing while providing users with a significant edge in the total cost of ownership.”

Via Reuters