Carmakers such as Daimler, BMW or Volkswagen are increasingly morphing into tech companies in their bid to develop the digital backbone of new mobility and fend off competition from the big tech firms, writes Christiaan Hetzner for Automotive News Europe. Many car industry managers are betting on in-house solutions rather than co-innovate with rivals or smaller firms. Simply buying shares in tech firms, however, fails as a strategy, Hetzner writes. “The core business needs to adapt, too, and software expertise must be developed in-house if carmakers are to remain competitive. To ensure that their employees think more like workers at tech companies, the entire mindset has to change.”
Germany’s carmakers have vowed to fight in the green transport revolution. Many experts expect to see a shift to e-mobility, autonomous driving and digital mobility services, which will make German carmakers’ traditional engineering strongpoint less important. The industry is also still bogged down by the ongoing debate about the future of combustion engines, in particular diesel-powered cars.