08 April 2015

Problems With the Auto Industry

There has got to be a better way

There are things that are not right with the auto industry. It looks rosy but it isn't. So what are the issues and improvements.

Cost. Cars cost consumers too much. It's not just the outlay, nor fuel, servicing, insurance or registration. The big killer is depreciation. If they cost less to buy, then that would lessen depreciation.

Consumers. They wear the high cost of car ownership so they get what they deserve. I bought a small new car nine years ago and recently wanted to buy another new car. I didn't because the one I have works fine, depreciation makes it of little value and I resent giving up so much hard earned money to pour down the new car sink hole. If more people held off buying, then maybe the industry would have to look at how it operates.

Independence. Car makers do too much alone. They are cooperating more than they used to, but it still far too little. So much cost is wasted by duplicated R&D, costs that could be shared. That would bring the prices down.

Congestion: Car makers cannot be blamed for this but their product polutes and causes massive congestion. That adds stress, health issues and reduces efficiency. Big cities have public transport and I wonder when these metropolises start to crack down on private car ownership. The car industry is and will be getting more bad press.

There are so many alternatives to improve transport efficiency 
that could compliment car ownership

Summary: The car has offered personal mobility for the masses, something unique in history. Like many of man's inventions, unless controlled it ends up defeating what it was supposed to achieve. Of course, bringing the price down of new cars would add to congestion. That is why regulations need to control ownership in certain situations such as crowded cities, once they become more of a hindrance than a help. The car industry margins are rather small. Less car companies (but not necessarily less brands) would certainly improve efficiency.

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