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Automobile manufacturers should be rushing to “Mobility Valley"

By bringing together its research and projects, the European automobile industry could continue its success story – and aim to take the lead in technology for e-mobility, fuel cells and alternative fuels.

18 Jan. 2019
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Automobile manufacturers should be rushing to “Mobility Valley” (picture: McKinsey Center for Future Mobility)

This potential scenario is described by the business consultancy McKinsey in its study Race 2050 . The biggest advantage of European car manufacturers over China and the USA is that they could exploit the variety on the continent to give themselves a competitive edge. McKinsey sees potential in local pilot schemes for solutions and products that can then be implemented globally.

The consultants suggest, among other things, building a European “Mobility Valley” in which research from the top universities could be brought together with the development projects of the automobile industry, which would also bring a change in employment: of the 3.4 million jobs in the car industry, 1.3 million would be transformed, according to McKinsey, and 200,000 might disappear altogether. Further measures recommended by the business consultancy is the decarbonization of passenger and goods transport and stronger networking among automobile manufacturers, for example through using common data and software pools.

Last year the Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES) had already raised the question in its own study as to whether the German automobile industry would be transformed “by disaster” or “by design”. Internal company measures are not sufficient to cope with the fundamental changes taking place in the automobile sector. A package for future mobility is required, the study explains, that brings together business, political and social strategies. The goal must be a transformation in traffic that affects the whole of society.

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