Auto execs ID electric vehicles as top industry trend

Automated driving will change the auto industry, according to those responding to KPMG survey

February 21, 2017
Purchasing B2B

TORONTO—Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) have overtaken connectivity and digitization as the top trend in the industry until 2025, according to half of the automotive executives surveyed in KPMG’s 2017 Global Automotive Executive Survey.

However, the key issue with pure battery electric vehicles seems to be setting up a user-friendly charging infrastructure, leading the majority (62 percent) of executives to believe that BEVS will ultimately fail. In contrast, 78 percent of executives believe that BEVs will be overshadowed by fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) in the future, with FCEVs solving the recharging and infrastructure issues BEVs face today.

In addition, the survey shows that autonomous driving will revolutionize the way we use cars and make the purchasing criteria of the past irrelevant. Indeed, 68 percent of executives already feel that the purchasing criteria of the past like performance and speed, safety innovation, environmental friendliness or comfort will not determine the purchase of a car anymore.

Other key findings from KPMG’s 2017 Global Automotive Executive Survey include:

Diesel is set for rapid decline–from a regulatory perspective, the most discussed topic over the last year has been diesel technology. In fact, 50 percent of executives surveyed believe diesel will be the first traditional powertrain technology to vanish from the manufacturers’ portfolio.

Investing and winningover the next five years, 53 percent of executives are planning to invest in plug-in hybrids, and 52 percent in internal combustion engines (ICE) and full hybrids. KPMG also surveyed 240 consumers on their vehicle purchasing opinions and found the full hybrid vehicles are their first choice for their next car (36 percent), while 21 percent would still buy a car with an ICE.

Taking the temperature on the digital ecosystem—in the future, 85 percent of executives believe that the digital ecosystem will generate higher revenues than the hardware of the car itself.
KPMG in Canada’s National Automotive Sector Leader, Peter Hatges, will be at the Canadian International AutoShow’s Media Day on February 16, 2017. Peter is pleased to speak about the survey’s results as well as other trends and issues in the automotive industry.