The Endgame

For many decades, business in the automotive industry was linear. However, the demands of our time pose major challenges to the industry's business model.

Das Endspiel der Automobilbranche

Although the European automotive industry is widely known as an attractive employer and a driver of growth and prosperity, the industry has reached a crucial turning point. It is facing an unprecedented process of change that is sweeping the entire automotive industry. With a competitive landscape in flux, technological advances, changing customer behavior, and increasing challenges from the economic and political climate the industry is gearing up for the automotive end game.


The business model of an entire industry is outdated

The European automotive industry is already investing heavily in the technology-driven megatrends of autonomous driving, connectivity, electrification and shared mobility to remain competitive in the future. However, the investments in vehicle technologies do not seem to be sufficient. Traditional vehicle manufacturers are thus no longer competing only with their products and services, but also in terms of their business models and sales channels. New market entrants that have grown up in the network, such as Tesla, are not burdened by this, compared to long-established car manufacturers with their outdated and entrenched distribution and sales networks.


Digital approaches exist - but do not promise a uniform customer experience

Whereas in the past large manufacturing plants with a high degree of vertical integration were a differentiating factor, the focus is now on IT-supported solutions, networked services and innovative drive technologies. The ongoing digital transformation has revolutionized the way people consume media, buy consumer goods, and interact with friends. The European automotive industry has so far failed to keep pace with these developments. Since the 1980s, distribution systems have remained largely unchanged: Manufacturers still sell the majority of their vehicles through local car dealerships. Although those involved in the existing system communicate with their customers through different digital and analog sales and communication channels, these channels do not provide a consistent customer experience. On the contrary, this multi-channel approach is characterized by a high degree of heterogeneity and little linkage between the established channels. Accordingly, this approach no longer meets customer expectations.


We will be looking at how these challenges can be met with an omnichannel strategy on our blog in the coming weeks.



Bastian Büschke

Bastian ist Manager bei Digacon. Der gebürtige Ostwestfale und Fußballfan von Arminia Bielefeld steht in seiner Freizeit auch mal selbst auf dem Platz. Wandert gerne, mag gute Bücher.

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