In the last 130 years, the automotive industry has experienced several major changes. Current regulator-led initiatives for electric mobility and new business models are the some of the most recent cases. However, at the turn of the 20th century, electric cars were not uncommon on the streets of New York, Paris and London. At that time, like now, it was hard to predict the future of mobility. But suddenly, in the ten years from 1904 to 1914, the automotive industry changed completely. Electric cars disappeared and cars with internal combustion engines took their place on an ever-expanding network of roads and highways with their own chains of gas stations. Companies like Ford and General Motors became the market leaders by introducing new manufacturing methods such as mass production, and new management concepts such as planned obsolescence. What lessons can be learned from those early years of the 20th century? What are the implications for the automotive industry value chain and its main players? Do we have to look at the past to get to the future?
In this 33rd edition of IESE AUTO, the annual Automotive Industry Meeting, we hope to shed some light on these issues while also addressing more standard topics on the Spanish, European and world auto markets. The aim is to continue the IESE tradition of providing a premier platform where senior industry executives and leading experts and academics can exchange their ideas on the future of the “industry of industries.”