Listening to automotive data is essential as industry evolves

Industry changes towards digital and electric vehicles are impacting the data and intelligence requirements of manufacturers and dealers, writes Peter Jacobs

At a time of significant change within the automotive industry, data and the ways in which it is harnessed has become an area of increasing importance. Ever increasing layers of complex data are now readily available and have come to be relied upon. Without this data, supply chains across the industry would cease to function at full capacity.

While data is, and always has been, central to the automotive industry, the market is only at the starting line when it comes to utilising data and making the most of what it has to offer. The years have witnessed many important changes across the industry—all of which impact the data and intelligence requirements of manufacturers, leasing service providers and dealers. Today, businesses require all sorts of data, ranging from the latest updates in safety technologies to insights into the drive for sustainability such as specific features of electric and hybrid vehicles.

This huge uptick in requests for automotive data is a result of the stark reality for manufacturers, leasing service providers and dealers to remain relevant as vehicles become more complex, new sustainable technologies continue to emerge, and consumers’ expectations for mobility solutions shift.

Automotive companies increasingly rely on fresh, up to date data to track the market’s trajectory and the evolving trends that will have an impact on their bottom lines

As the interactions between automotive businesses and consumers evolve, so too are the demands of customers. The features that matter most, how often they want to use a car, their sustainability preferences—all are changing at a pace and brands must know how to differentiate themselves against their competitors in light of these changes.

Automotive companies increasingly rely on fresh, up to date data to track the market’s trajectory and the evolving trends that will have an impact on their bottom lines. In 1984, body protection, wheels, and paint were the automotive advances keeping companies up at night. If a manufacturer isn’t aware of the latest industry trends or is simply updating its offerings based on gut-feel, it will not maintain its competitive edge.

An obvious yet pertinent example is the rapid expansion of electric vehicles (EVs), which more than doubled in registrations across Europe in 2020. Where EVs were once new kids on the block, they are no longer niche products. The strong push towards electrification from businesses and governments brought with it the need for new data and intelligence. Understanding and responding to those evolving needs with relevant, timely and accurate market data and insight will be critical to the industry’s adaptation.

Data and intelligence are key tools that will allow the automotive industry to fully embrace the future of mobility with confidence and success

As new products and marketplaces, such as EVs, become more competitive, data will be a key enabler to allow automotive players to make informed decisions from product portfolios and technology adoption, to pricing, selection of target markets and supply chain planning. Data and intelligence are key tools that will allow the automotive industry to fully embrace the future of mobility with confidence and success. Both historic and current data is more crucial than ever to guarantee a holistic view of on-going and future market trends.

Connectivity, electric vehicles, autonomous driving—these are not simply buzz words for the industry. By accessing the right data and knowing how to use it, businesses can ensure they remain at the forefront of market changes, ready for whatever the future brings.

The opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the positions of Automotive World Ltd.

Peter Jacobs is Head of Data Management at JATO Dynamics

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