Automotive Trends to Watch for in 2019

We’re only a couple of months into the new year and we’ve already spotted a few trends to keep your eye on in 2019.

Ride-hailing services won’t be going away anytime soon.

Last year, the top five companies in this sector – Uber, Lyft, DiDi, Grab and Go-Jek – were estimated to be worth more than $230 billion. This year, look for blockbuster IPOs (initial public offerings) from Uber, Lyft and DiDi, as they join the list of publicly-traded companies. This signals a seismic shift in the way we look at transportation, as the valuations are more than those of well-established automobile companies that have been around for more than 75 years.

Don’t buy or lease: subscribe.

Thanks to Millenials and Gen Zers (those born between the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s) the number of drivers who’d rather subscribe to a vehicle (think of it as a short-term lease) is increasing. Researchers estimate that by 2025 (just a few years from now) 10% of new vehicle sales will be subscription-based; that’s more than 16 million new and used vehicles.  

Silicon Valley meets Detroit.

Software technology companies are making further inroads into the automotive sector through services like basing insurance on vehicle usage and new finance and leasing services. Cars and the way we drive them are changing: redundant braking and steering systems are becoming more and more commonplace, and diagnostics and vehicle health monitoring are changing as well. The Internet Of Things (IoT, which is the network of devices like vehicles and home appliances that contain electronics that connect, interact and exchange data) – and AI (artificial intelligence) – are transforming the automotive sector, leading to way to self-driving cars and other things that seemed unimaginable just a generation ago.

Changes in the world stage have an impact.

After a decade of growth, the automotive market in China stumbled in 2018. This year, expect a slowing economy, the continued popularity of public transportation, and an increasingly saturated SUV market to slow things down even more. The uncertainties caused by Brexit and the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement are likely to add to an unstable automotive market around the world, which might be offset by marginal growth in new car sales in emerging markets such as Mexico, India, and Brazil.

Whatever happens this year, automotive-wise, there’s still only one place to go if you’ve been involved in a collision or your vehicle needs general auto body repair. Since 1976, Ric’s Body & Paint has been the Valley’s leader in getting your ride back on track after a mishap. Contact Ric’s today!

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