The effects are not the same for all companies
How all of this works cannot be said in general terms. Puls: “Here you have to differentiate between manufacturers, large suppliers and small, specialized suppliers.” The manufacturers are still relatively well positioned, especially in comparison with their European competitors. Because in the largest markets – the USA and China – our manufacturers produce on site in their own factories. In addition, the world market for premium cars is pretty much in German hands.
850,000 people were employed in the auto industry in 2019.
The same applies to the large suppliers: They still have enough reserves to open up and expand new business areas – this has been worked on for years. Anyone who manufactures parts such as bodies or chassis does not have to worry about their existence either. Because something like this is also built into electric cars.
Transformation means: opening up new business areas
However, it looks bleak for those who specialize in engine blocks or other components for passenger cars with internal combustion engines: Your market will inevitably dwindle over time. “In order to survive in the long term, such companies have to reinvent themselves”, Puls is convinced. The problem: Right now, there is often a lack of capital for this.
An apocalyptic collapse is generally not to be feared, but the fat years are definitely over. In top form as it was in the past, the auto industry will no longer be able to drive the economy forward, and the future cannot be mastered without painful adjustments.
If you want to know more about it: The IW study is under the link iwkoeln.de available for free download.