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Exploding Auto Trends That Will Shape The Future Of The Car Industry

Cameron EittreimMarch 10, 2022

Design trends are constantly changing in the automotive industry. The industry is shaped by how consumers react to the way vehicles are designed or introduced. When consumers react positively to a new vehicle or design trend, you’ll generally see the rest of the industry follow suit. The past two decades have been an important time for the automotive industry.

The changing pace of automotive trends determines the future of the industry as a whole. Consumer tastes do not always dictate trends alone as a lot of trends can be influenced by the success of a single automaker. We looked at automotive trends that are currently exploding and will define the future of the automotive industry as a whole.

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35: Autonomous Vehicles

It’s been said for decades that one day our cars will drive us around and in the last decade that has become a reality. Google has been pushing the narrative of self-driving cars, and Tesla has made it a reality for consumers. Self-driving cars will change the way we drive in more ways than one (via Lynchpin SEO).

Photo Credit: Tesla

People with disabilities who would otherwise miss out on the privilege of driving now have the chance to drive these cars. While it is unclear if autonomous self-driving cars will still require you to have a driver’s license, the future of public transportation will soon change in a very short amount of time.

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34: Electrified

Electric cars have been a reality since the 1990s with the release of the GM EV1. But it has only been recently that electric cars came to the forefront of the automotive industry. Nowadays, electric cars are becoming more common than ever. Within a few years, electric cars will outpace gasoline engines in terms of sales and production numbers (via Lynchpin SEO).

Photo Credit: Tesla

When you look at trends that are changing the automotive industry, the electrification of the automotive industry is at the front of the line. Tesla led the charge with retail electric cars, and now GM and Ford are getting into the fray. It will be interesting to see the different types of electric cars that come to the market.

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33: Shared

Car sharing has also swept the automotive industry by storm, which was led by UBER and Lyft. There was a time when ridesharing wasn’t even a thing, but with technology rising by the day, there is no limit to what can happen. Ridesharing is not only a way to save money on transportation but also benefits the environment (via PWC).

Photo Credit: UBER

Although there has been some controversy about the ridesharing industry, it hasn’t been enough to stop its monstrous growth. UBER is on track to be one of the most influential companies in the world, and the commercial taxi cab business has all but vanished. Ridesharing will continue to transform the automotive industry.

Photo Credit: Uber

32: Connected

Motor vehicles are more connected nowadays than ever before. Technology has changed the automotive industry for the better. One of the great things about having a connected car is that you can enjoy new levels of connectivity. Today’s modern automobiles come with everything from built-in internet broadcasting to multimedia capabilities (via PWC).

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With Apple and Google both contributing to new car technology, this will only grow in the future. Cars will continue to link to our homes and bring you the comforts of home on the road. There is nothing wrong with having a modern connected car or truck, and the quality of our transportation will only increase.

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31: Rise In Subscription-Based Vehicle Usership Models

One of the most innovative aspects of the automotive industry these days is the subscription-based buying options. There are new services that allow you to pay a monthly fee to drive a vehicle. Kind of like Netflix for cars, these services have been steadily rising as an option for more consumers (via Forbes).

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Cars are getting expensive. One of the ways consumers are combating these rising costs is by utilizing these new subscription services. Apart from the benefit of not being on the hook for a car note, you also don’t have to worry about the high maintenance costs associated with ownership.

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30: Automatic Parking Solutions

Parallel parking has always been one of the most difficult aspects of driving. There are more insurance claims filed because a driver bumps another vehicle than for any other type of accident. Parking isn’t easy, and the automakers have realized that which is why today’s cars have advanced parking systems (via Forbes).

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These systems not only help in parking but also in some cases the car can park itself. If you’ve dreaded parking, then one of these options might do the trick. You can park with ease, and you won’t have to worry about damaging your ride.

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29: Analytics Galore: Big Data Informs All

Big data collection has always been part of the automotive industry, but nowadays it is more prevalent than ever. Automakers have looked to data collection companies to see where automotive trends are going. This is also done to study the buying habits of consumers and what segment of the industry is the hottest (via Forbes).

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Big data has always been there, but now the companies are using it more than ever. If you notice a certain type of automotive or price range, that’s because big data companies are following consumer trends. There will be a point in time when big data controls everything in the automotive industry.

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28: Longer Lasting EV Batteries

There was a time when EVs weren’t the most reliable option for transportation. The range wasn’t there, and the vehicles were downright ugly. But thanks to Tesla, automakers have finally perfected the range debacle that stuck in the automotive industry for all these years. Electric cars can finally make it where gasoline-powered cars could (via Forbes).

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Time will tell how efficient these cars are, and how batteries will be disposed of when they go bad. At the moment, replacing an electric car battery is expensive, but like most technology, that cost will come down.

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27: Faster Evolution: The Need for Yearly Updates

You can’t miss how fast cars are changing nowadays. It used to be that an automaker could keep a car on the market for around five years with minimal changes. That isn’t the case anymore, as automakers are fiercer than ever. Now it isn’t uncommon to see an automaker update a car a year after it was released (via Forbes).

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One time this happened was when Honda redesigned the 2012 Civic the next year and introduced the 2013 model. It isn’t uncommon for a vehicle to be a mistake, and an automaker must react quickly to rectify it. Cars are changing faster than ever and new updates are always coming.

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26: Human-Machine Interfaces (HMI)

Ever noticed the interface in your car is more lifelike than ever? That’s because automakers are using more forms of A.I. to increase the driver’s experience. You know that cars are more technologically advanced than ever. These human-machine interfaces have changed every aspect of how we use our cars (via Startus Insights).

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No longer are you just punching the gas or using a stick shift. Today’s cars monitor everything from your mood to the temperature outside. As time progresses even further, you’ll find the automotive industry following suit with new technology.

Photo Credit: CNET

25: Internet of Things

The internet has become more of a thing in the automotive industry. The most obvious addition was the built-in hot spots that automakers offer. We used to have to wait until we got home to use the internet, but that isn’t the case anymore. Automakers are trying to make vehicles as comfortable as possible (via Startus Insights).

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Part of the way you can make a vehicle more comfortable is by adding the internet. The interfaces of modern vehicles also use a lot of internet technology. Whether you want to search for something through Google, buy something on Amazon, or find a song. There is a good chance your new car can do that.

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24: Vision Zero

On top of cars becoming more digital than ever before, they are also becoming smarter. Cars have all kinds of new technology to prevent crashes. The goal is to protect the occupants from a crash that could potentially harm them. Most cars nowadays have some sort of vision system that alerts the car to potential trouble (via Startus Insights).

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This could be anything from a hazard on the road to reporting a car accident when the owner is anxious. There is no limit to where technology will take these cars, and these modern vision systems are impressive.

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23: Digital Sixth Sense

As with the rest of the new automotive technology, these cars can also sense driver issues. A modern car can tell if the driver is asleep and control the vehicle accordingly. This has happened so much that Tesla had to issue an upgrade for their vehicle’s firmware. Falling asleep at the wheel is all too common (via Forbes).

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Tesla is just one of the automakers that have tried to change this awful problem. These sixth sense systems are put in place to ensure the car stays on course. Sure, there are times when the system will malfunction, but even with human error, these systems have saved lives.

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22: The Way Consumers Buy Cars Has Shifted

Covid-19 changed the way many businesses operated. The main issue came from how consumers purchased vehicles. All of a sudden overnight consumers bought cars online, and the salesman was being phased out. Automakers learned they didn’t need legions of salesmen to sell these vehicles (via Forbes).

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With the right online technology you can sell the same amount of vehicles. Consumers have now grown accustomed to buying something online. There is a whole new generation of car buyers who aren’t even going to want to deal with a salesman. These new automotive options have completely changed the industry.

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21: Cloud Computing Models/ Hybrid Computing Models

Cloud computing is more than just a term that people use to sound smart, it also applies to the automotive industry. Time and time again, new cars are being built without all the junk they used to come with. Many unnecessary paperwork and technology can be stored in the cloud (via Forbes).

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Even updates to your vehicle’s CPU can come straight from the cloud nowadays. The cloud is also being used to connect your car to your smart home. These are things that consumers want, and they aren’t that far away. Cloud computing will become a reality for the automotive industry at one point.

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20: Smart Factory

Another place that automakers changed the game was in their factories. These places used to churn out vehicles built by hand. But with all the new robotic technology, a car can be built in many hours. 3D printing has helped tremendously in the types of interiors and features that can be built in-house (via Forbes).

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This technology also helps automakers save billions on R&D, leaving a lot of money on the table for other things. These areas are more advanced than ever, and the new technology goes into a more advanced vehicle.

Photo Credit: GM

19: Mild Hybrid

When the economic crash of 2008 happened, gas prices were as high as ever. Automakers needed a way to get people back into the showrooms, and thus hybrid models were popular. On many cars, the hybrid name was more of a branding effort than anything (via Forbes).

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But automakers like Toyota stuck to their guns and brought these cars to the market. Nowadays, there are all kinds of hybrid models on the market. Although most modern cars get pretty good gas mileage, a hybrid can take it to the next level. Hybrids are more or less the bridge between the old automotive industry and the future.

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18: Enhanced In-Vehicle Experiences

Entertainment is a big point and most new cars have it in abundance. Whether it’s streaming services, movies or music, your car probably has it. Now that doesn’t mean automakers have gotten lazy with the design. You’ll still have to work to get to these features, but they are much more mainstream than before (via Forbes).

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It used to be that a DVD player was a royal option, but nowadays just about any car can play music. You can find many cool options built into the vehicle. These options include all kinds of cool entertainment features. If you like to be entertained on the road, then these features are worth checking out.

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17: Heads-Up Display Windshield

Dashboards are also changing dramatically, including the heads-up display. What used to be a pure luxury feature is sort of the norm now. A heads-up display means you won’t spend time staring at the dashboard. Many people have embraced the heads-up display because it could help prevent more crashes (via Forbes).

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The head-sup display is a fairly common option, but it can make a world of different. Even if you barely drive, the heads-up display will make checking out all your car’s vitals much easier.

Photo Credit: Tesla

16: Voice-Activated Car OS

It started with Ford and the SYNC system they used on the original Ford Fusion. Now almost every car has some sort of voice-activated system. There are a few uses to the voice-activated system. The first is of course to talk on the phone and get updates through your car when you are on the road (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Tesla

A voice-activated system is also great for protecting the driver in case of an accident. It can be activated so that the proper authorities can be called. No matter what the main use for these systems is, they have dramatically changed the automotive industry.

Photo Credit: Tesla

15: Automatic High-Beam control

In recent years, with all the updates in the automotive industry, high beams have been under intense scrutiny. When you have high-beams that are overtly bright, they can cause the other driver to get in trouble. Automakers have realized that, and they’ve started to change the high-beam systems in the cars (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Tesla

When these systems sense another vehicle coming, they will disengage. This means the oncoming driver won’t be blinded by oncoming lights. Time will tell how these new systems will catch on, but they are already being utilized right now.

Photo Credit: Ford

14: Versatile Cruise Control

Cruise control has also come a long way in the past decade. Instead of just pressing a button, the car can now control it by itself. Tesla models are a prime example of when cruise control is done right. The cruise control system in the Tesla models set the stage for other automakers to follow suit (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Ford

While it might not be the automotive industry that you remember, there are some perks to having a more advanced cruise control system. Automakers want to make it as easy for you to drive as possible, and the right cruise control system can do this.

Photo Credit: Ford

13: Automatic Lift Gates

Because getting into the rear of your SUV is a pain, an automatic lift gate will make all the difference in the world. Maybe you want to get to your groceries quicker. An automatic lift gate can be accessed via the key fob or a smart phone app. The automakers are trying to make these systems as intuitive as possible (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Ford

The right automatic lift gate will make all the difference in the world. For someone who can’t reach the lift gate, the automatic option is a lifesaver. There are also other uses for an automatic lift gate.

Photo Credit: Ford

12: Test Configuration

Automakers want to make the process of buying a new car as streamlined as possible. Part of the way they do this is by allowing you to configure the car online. You can even test the car out before you buy it for an extended period. All this is done to cut out the middle man and give the automaker more profit (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Ford

It used to be required that you used a salesman and test drove the car. Nowadays, the automaker will bring the car to you and test it out. This new on-demand world that we live in will change the way we buy new cars forever.

Photo Credit: Ford

11: Highlighted Sensations

Making the car more of an experience to drive has also been on the minds of designers. There are many more touch-points inside a new car, and many more features that you’d notice. From the neon lighting in the Kia Soul to the interesting exhaust note of the Civic Type R. These automakers want you to enjoy your drive as much as possible (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Ford

Highlighted sensations mean the driver is more connected to the car. This could be new touch points on the dashboard or even a more advanced security system. The highlighted sensations of the driving experience make owning a car more fun than before.

Photo Credit: Ford

10: Inbuilt Engine Air Ventilation

The HVAC systems inside of cars are changing more with the future. The new air ventilation systems are designed to keep the bad stuff out. You’ll notice that most new cars have a calmer interior than ever before. There are less smells and you’ll have a healthier driving experience (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Ford

The revised ventilation systems also mean that the heating and cooling systems work better than ever before. Chances are when you get a new car, you will have a comfortable driving experience. It will be interesting to see where automakers will take the HVAC systems and ventilation in the future.

Photo Credit: Edmunds

9: Concept Cars

Just because cars are better than before doesn’t mean there aren’t still concept cars. Concept cars are the lifeblood of the automotive industry and today’s concept cars are even better than before. That’s because with all the new advances in technology, most automakers can build a fully operational concept car (via Forbes).

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That means consumers get a better shot to see what all the health is about. A great concept car can set the pace for where a brand will go. Automakers had veered off from creating great concept cars, but they’re moving back in that direction.

Photo Credit: GM

8: Positive Solar Energy

Solar energy is starting to power everything else in our lives, why not our rides? Automakers are working to harness the power of solar so that it can be used to power the electric cars on the road. If they could power these cars from start to finish, more buyers would be interested (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: GM

A solar-powered electric car would never need to be charged, because it would be out in the sun. To see where solar technology is going, we need to follow the home based solar market. Positive solar energy will make a big difference in the automotive industry.

Photo Credit: Edmunds

7: Ioniq Seven Concept

Hyundai has made leaps and bounds since the Excel debacle of the 1980s. The cars Hyundai sells nowadays are comfortable rides. The Ioniq Seven concept was designed to show what the company can do when it comes to electric cars. It was modern and comfortable and looked like something consumers would want (via Forbes).

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The problem with most consumers embracing electric cars is that the vehicles look too extreme. So when you have something that looks more welcoming, there are sure to be more consumers who want to get one.

Photo Credit: Edmunds

6: Full Transparent Archives

Lamborghini was one of the first companies to embrace transparent archives. Among all the unique features that you could want in an exotic, this is one of these. Lamborghini has always been at the forefront of design. The problem is that the brand was sort of extreme early on, but that has changed in the past few years (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Motor 1

Now Lamborghini is marking a pushing for the exotic car buying public. The cars are more universally accepted, and the URUS has been a huge success for the company. Time will tell how Lamborghini will begin to combat the critics and embrace their newfound success.

Photo Credit: Edmunds

5: One-Touch Command

You want things at your fingertips, and the automotive manufacturers understand this. Having one-touch commands in a car is crucial nowadays, with the push to be more comfortable. Whether it’s your electric seating or the controls on the radio. One-touch commands will make all the difference in the world (via Forbes).

Photo Credit: Lexus

You could drive a car all day, but if you are fiddling with the commands, it just takes away from the joy of driving. Since more cars use some sort of smart car system, it has never been easier to get one touch command out of your car.

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4: Automotive IQ Guides

Automotive manufacturers are making cars more advanced than ever. These IQ guides are just one of the ways engineers determine how the car will respond to you. At any given time, a modern car has dozens of different computer systems working simultaneously. These systems work together to ensure a safe driving experience (via Forbes).

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You know that cars will get more advanced as time goes on. These systems are designed to protect you in a crash. They also help the car achieve better fuel economy and a more well-rounded driving experience.

Photo Credit: Edmunds

3: HOD Car Service

On demand car services are growing like wildfire. These services are designed to put the driving experience at the palms of your hands. These on-demand car services can do everything from getting a ride sharing services to booking a rental car. There is no reason to do face-to-face transactions anymore (via Forbes).

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Automakers are trying to make the car buying experience friendlier than ever. The same can be said for renting and anything else that you need. If it involves a car, there is a good chance you will use an HOD car service at some point in time.

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2: UI/UX Concept Design

Automakers are trying to make cars that appeal to everyone, and that means digging deeper into the UI/UX design language. They want to build cars that can do everything you need. Designing friendlier interiors is also important, because drivers spend more time on the road than ever before (via Forbes).

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This type of design also centers on the infotainment systems and the interior in general. You’ll notice that every new car is seemingly designed around the driver. If you want to enjoy driving, there is a good chance the car went through this process.

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1: Hankook Roll Out Hexonic Tires

Hankook is a major player in the consumer tire industry. These tire companies are always looking for a better way to service the consumer. The roll out hexonic tires are just one of the new concepts that have come out. In addition to the next generation of run-flat tires, these are an amazing product (via Forbes).

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If you want a safe tire that will transform the way that you drive, these just might be the next best option. Time will tell how Hankook will change the game with these tires. But if you’ve been following the tire market, then you know that more changes will come. This company is always at the forefront of innovation.

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