The automotive industry is a term that covers a wide range of companies and organisations involved in the design, development, manufacture, marketing, and selling of motor vehicles, towed vehicles, motorcycles and mopeds. It is one of the world's most important economic sectors by revenue.
The first practical automobile with a petrol engine was built by Karl Benz in 1885 in Mannheim, Germany. Benz was granted a patent for his automobile on 29 January 1886, and began the first production of automobiles in 1888, after Bertha Benz, his wife, had proved with the first long-distance trip in August 1888 (104 km (65 mi) from Mannheim to Pforzheim and back) that the horseless coach was absolutely suitable for daily use. Since 2008 a Bertha Benz Memorial Route commemorates this event.
Soon after, in 1889, Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach in Stuttgart designed a vehicle from scratch to be an automobile, rather than a horse-drawn carriage fitted with an engine. They also are usually credited as inventors of the first motorcycle, the Daimler Reitwagen, in 1885, but Italy's Enrico Bernardi, of the University of Padua, in 1882, patented a 0.024 horsepower (17.9 W) 122 cc (7.4 cu in) one-cylinder petrol motor, fitting it into his son's tricycle, making it at least a candidate for the first automobile, and first motorcycle.:p.26 Bernardi enlarged the tricycle in 1892 to carry two adults.:p.26
The automotive industry began in the 1890s with hundreds of manufacturers that pioneered the horseless carriage. For many decades, the United States led the world in total automobile production. In 1929 before the Great Depression, the world had 32,028,500 automobiles in use, and the U.S. automobile industry produced over 90% of them. At that time the U.S. had one car per 4.87 persons. After WWII the U.S. produced about 75 percent of world's auto production. In 1980 the U.S. was overtaken by Japan and became world's leader again in 1994. In 2006, Japan narrowly passed the U.S. in production and held this rank until 2009, when China took the top spot with 13.8 million units. By producing 18.4 million units in 2011, China produced more than twice the number of automobiles made by the U.S. in second place with 8.7 million units, while Japan was in third place with 8.4 million units.
Safety is a state that implies to be protected from any risk, danger, damage or cause of injury. In the automotive industry, safety means that users, operators or manufacturers do not face any risk or danger coming from the motor vehicle or its spare parts. Safety for the automotives themselves implies that there is no risk of damage.
Safety in the automotive industry is particularly important and therefore highly regulated. Automobiles and other motor vehicles have to comply with a certain number of norms and regulations, whether local or international, in order to be accepted on the market. The standard ISO 26262  (_See also main article:_ ISO 26262) for instance is considered as one of the best practice framework for achieving automotive functional safety. That is, to ensure that motored vehicles meet all requirements for safe manufacturing and operation for end-users.
In case of safety issues, danger, product defect or faulty procedure during the manufacturing of the motor vehicle, the maker can request to return either a batch or the entire production run. This procedure is called product recall. Product recalls happen in every industry and can be production-related or stem from the raw material.
Product and operation tests and inspections at different stages of the value chain are made to avoid these product recalls by ensuring end-user security and safety and compliance with the automotive industry requirements. However, the automotive industry is still particularly concerned about product recalls, which cause considerable financial consequences.
Around the world, there were about 806 million cars and light trucks on the road in 2007, consuming over 260 billion US gallons (980,000,000 m3) of gasoline and diesel fuel yearly. The automobile is a primary mode of transportation for many developed economies. The Detroit branch of Boston Consulting Group predicts that, by 2014, one-third of world demand will be in the four BRIC markets (Brazil, Russia, India and China). Other potentially powerful automotive markets are Iran and Indonesia. Emerging auto markets already buy more cars than established markets. According to a J.D. Power study, emerging markets accounted for 51 percent of the global light-vehicle sales in 2010. The study expects this trend to accelerate.
World motor vehicle production
For many decades, the United States led the world in total automobile production. In 1929 before the Great Depression, the world had 32,028,500 automobiles in use, and the US automobile industry produced over 90% of them. At that time the U.S. had one car per 4.87 persons. After WWII the U.S. issued 3/4 of world's auto production. In 1980 the U.S. was overtaken by Japan and became world's leader again in 1994. In 2006, Japan narrowly passed the U.S. in production and held this rank until 2009, when China took the top spot with 13.8 million units. By producing 18.4 million units in 2011, China produced more than twice the number of automobiles made by the U.S. in second place with 8.7 million units, while Japan was in third place with 8.4 million units.
Global production of motorvehicles
(cars and commercial vehicles)
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|Total motor vehicle production|
|Key||Cars||Light Commercial Vehicles||Heavy Commercial Vehicles||Heavy Buses|
|Dongfeng Motor||(1,095,065) - Under review, see note.|
|Geely||(902,824) - Under review, see note.|
|Beijing Automotive||(689,635) - Under review, see note.|
|Chang'an Automobile||(681,719) - Under review, see note.|
|Chery||(637,423) - Under review, see note.|
|FAW||(621,271) - Under review, see note.|
|Great Wall||(486,562) - Under review, see note.|
|Key||Cars||Light Commercial Vehicles||Heavy Commercial Vehicles||Heavy Buses|
|Total: 78,799,483||Cars: 61,703,020||LCV: 13,637,299||HCV: 3,111,908||Heavy Bus: 347,256|
|Reference: "World motor vehicle production by manufacturer: World ranking of manufacturers, Year 2011". OICA. November 2012.|
|Chinese data under review, "WORLD MOTOR VEHICLE PRODUCTION OICA correspondents survey WITHOUT DOUBLE COUNTS WORLD RANKING OF MANUFACTURERS Year 2011". OICA. Retrieved 2012-12-22.|
It is common for automobile manufacturers to hold stakes in other automobile manufacturers. These ownerships can be explored under the detail for the individual companies.
Notable current relationships include:
- Daimler AG holds a 20% stake in Eicher Motors, a 10.0% stake in KAMAZ, a 10% stake in Tesla Motors, a 6.75% stake in Tata Motors and a 3.1% in the Renault-Nissan Alliance.
- Dongfeng Motor Corporation is involved in joint ventures with several companies around the world, including: Honda (Japan), Hyundai (South Korea), Nissan (Japan), Nissan Diesel (Sweden), and PSA Peugeot Citroen (France).
- Fiat holds a 90% stake in Ferrari and a 61.8% stake in Chrysler.
- Ford Motor Company holds a 3% stake in Mazda and a 12.1% share in Aston Martin.
- Geely Automobile holds a 23% stake in Manganese Bronze Holdings.
- General Motors holds a 7% stake in PSA Peugeot Citroen, Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC) have two joint ventures in Shanghai General Motors and SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile. Both also hold an equal 50% stake in General Motors India Private Limited. And General Motors holds a 94% stake in GM Korea and SAIC Group holds a 6% stake.
- Hyundai Kia Automotive Group holds a 33.99% stake in Kia Motors, down from the 51% that it acquired in 1998.
- MAN SE holds a 17.01% voting stake in Scania.
- Porsche Automobil Holding SE has a 50.74% voting stake in Volkswagen Group. The Porsche automotive business is fully owned by the Volkswagen Group.
- Renault and Nissan Motors have an alliance( Renault-Nissan Alliance ) involving two global companies linked by cross-shareholding, with Renault holding 44.3% of Nissan shares, and Nissan holding 15% of (non-voting) Renault shares. The alliance holds a 3.1% share in Daimler AG.
- Renault holds a 25% stake in AvtoVAZ and 20.5% of the voting stakes in Volvo Group.
- Toyota holds a 51% stake in Daihatsu, and 16.5% in Fuji Heavy Industries, parent company of Subaru.
- Volkswagen Group holds a 37.73% stake in Scania (68.6% voting rights), and a 53.7% stake in MAN SE (55.9% voting rights). Volkswagen is integrating Scania, MAN and its own truck division into one division.Volkswagen Group has a 19.9% stake in Suzuki, and Suzuki has a 5% stake in Volkswagen.
- Paccar inc. has a 19% stake in Tatra.
Top vehicle manufacturing groups by volume
The table below shows the world's largest motor vehicle manufacturing groups, along with the marques produced by each one. The table is ranked by 2011 end of year production figures from the International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers (OICA) for the parent group, and then alphabetically by marque. Joint ventures are not reflected in this table. Production figures of joint ventures are typically included in OICA rankings, which can become a source of controversy.
Note: This section does not include the selling of other products in a region example; CAT sells commercial vehicles in the US, Canada, Mexico, and Australia, and New Zealand. But sells its other products worldwide. If the table(markets) says that a brand is available in example North America, it doesn't include Territories controlled by countries on other continents. Example; GMC isn't available in any European territories within North America.
|Marque||Country of origin||Ownership||Markets|
|1. General Motors Company ( United States)|
|Buick||Division||United States, Canada, Mexico, China, Israel|
|Cadillac||Division||North America, Europe, Middle East, China, Japan, South Korea|
|Chevrolet||Division||Global, except Australia, New Zealand|
|GMC||Division||North America, Middle East|
|Holden||Subsidiary||Australia, New Zealand|
|HSV||Subsidiary||Australia, New Zealand|
|Jie Fang||Joint venture||China|
|Opel||Subsidiary||Europe (except UK), North Africa, South Africa, Middle East, China, Singapore, Australia, Chile|
|OPC||Subsidiary||Europe (except UK), South Africa, Middle East, Singapore, Australia, Chile|
|2. Volkswagen Group AG ( Germany)|
|Audi||Subsidiary||Global, except Iran|
|MAN||Subsidiary||Europe, Asia, Africa, South America|
|Porsche||Subsidiary||Global, except Iran|
|SEAT||Subsidiary||Europe, South America, Africa, Middle East, China, Mexico|
|Škoda||Subsidiary||Europe, Asia, Central America (including Dominican Republic), South America, Northern and western Africa, Australia, New Zealand|
|Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles||Subsidiary||Europe, Central America, South America, Australia, China|
|VTB||Subsidiary||Brazil, Mexico, Nigeria and South Africa|
|3. Toyota Motor Corporation ( Japan)|
|Daihatsu||Subsidiary||Europe, Asia, Africa, and South America|
|Hino||Subsidiary||South East Asia, Japan, North America and South America|
|Lexus||Division||South East Asia, Japan, Middle East, United States, Canada, Europe, Brazil, Panama, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa|
|Lexus F||Division||South East Asia, Japan, Middle East, United States, Canada, Europe, Brazil, Panama, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa|
|Scion||Subsidiary||United States, Canada|
|Toyota||Division||Global, except Iran|
|TRD||Subsidiary||North America, United Kingdom|
|4. Hyundai Motor Group ( South Korea)|
|Hyundai||Division||Global, except Mexico|
|Kia||Division||Global, except Mexico and Japan|
|5. Ford Motor Company ( United States)|
|Ford Team RS||Subsidiary||Europe|
|Lincoln||Division||United States, Canada, Mexico, Middle East, Japan, South Korea, China|
|SVT||Division||North America, Middle East|
|Troller||Subsidiary||South America, Africa|
|6. Nissan ( Japan)|
|Datsun||Division||Indonesia, India, Russia, South Africa|
|Infiniti||Subsidiary||Global, except Japan, Korea, South America and Africa|
|Infiniti Performance Line||Division||Global, except Japan, Korea, South America and Africa|
|Nissan||Division||Global, except Korea|
|Nismo||Division||Global, except Korea|
|7. Fiat S.p.A. ( Italy)|
|Abarth||Subsidiary||Global, except Iran|
|Alfa Romeo||Subsidiary||Global, except Iran, China, Taiwan and the Philippines|
|Chrysler||Subsidiary||Global, except Europe (excluding UK and Ireland), Africa (excluding South Africa and Egypt), South Asia, South East Asia (excluding the Philippines)|
|Dodge||Subsidiary||Global, except Europe, Africa(excluding South Africa and Egypt), South Asia, South East Asia (excluding the Philippines)|
|Ferrari||Subsidiary||Global, except Africa(excluding South Africa), Iran, South East Asia|
|Fiat||Subsidiary||Global, except Africa(excluding South Africa), Iran, South East Asia|
|Jeep||Subsidiary||Global, except Africa(excluding South Africa and Egypt), South Asia, South East Asia (excluding the Philippines)|
|Lancia||Subsidiary||Europe (except UK and Ireland)|
|Mopar||Subsidiary||Global, except Africa(excluding South Africa and Egypt), South Asia, South East Asia|
|Ram||Subsidiary||United States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Middle East|
|Street and Racing Technology||Subsidiary||Global, except Africa(excluding South Africa and Egypt), South Asia, South East Asia|
|8. PSA Peugeot Citroën S.A. ( France)|
|Citroën||Subsidiary||Europe, Central and South America, Northern and Western Africa, South Africa, Madagascar, Australia, New Zealand, Asia (except India, Pakistan and Bangladesh)|
|Peugeot||Subsidiary||Global, except USA, Canada, India, Pakistan and Bangladesh|
|9. Honda Motor Company ( Japan)|
|Acura||Subsidiary||United States, Canada, Mexico, China|
|Honda||Division||Global, except Korea|
|10. Renault ( France)|
|Dacia||Subsidiary||Europe, Middle East, Northern Africa|
|Renault||Division||Global, except United States, Canada, Korea, Africa(excluding North Africa, Ghana, Kenya and South Africa)|
|Renault Samsung||Subsidiary||South Korea, Chile|
|11. Suzuki Motor Corporation ( Japan)|
|Suzuki||Division||Global, except USA, Canada and Korea|
|Maruti Suzuki||Subsidiary||India, Middle East, South America|
|12. BMW AG ( Germany)|
|13. Daimler AG ( Germany)|
|Freightliner||Division||North America, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand|
|Setra||Division||Europe, Asia, USA|
|Thomas Built||Subsidiary||North America|
|Western Star||Subsidiary||North America, Australia, New Zealand|
|14. Mazda Motor Corporation ( Japan)|
|Mazda||Division||Global, except India and Korea|
|15. Mitsubishi Motors Corporation ( Japan)|
|Mitsubishi||Division||Global, except Korea|
|Ralliart||Subsidiary||Global, Except Korea|
|16. Dongfeng Motor Corporation ( China)|
|17. Tata Motors, Ltd ( India)|
|Tata||Division||India, Ghana, Italy, Nepal, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Nigeria|
|Tata Daewoo||Subsidiary||South Korea, Pakistan|
|18. Geely Automobile ( China)|
|Emgrand||Division||China, United Kingdom, Turkey|
|Geely||Division||China, Taiwan, Russia, North Africa, Middle East, South America, South Africa, Australia, Turkey|
|19. Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Corporation, Ltd ( China)|
|Foton||Subsidiary||China, Taiwan, Japan, Australia, South America, India|
|20. Chana Automobile Company, Ltd ( China)|
|Chana||Division||China, Taiwan, South Africa, Europe|
|Tiger Truck||Subsidiary||United States, Canada|
|21. SAIPA ( Iran)|
|22. Chery Automobile Company, Ltd ( China)|
|Chery||Division||China, South East Asia, Russia, South Africa, South America|
|23. OAO AvtoVAZ ( Russia)|
|Lada||Division||Europe (except United Kingdom, Portugal and Malta), Central Asia|
|24. First Automotive Group Corporation ( China)|
|Jie Fang||Joint venture||China|
|25. Fuji Heavy Industries, Ltd ( Japan)|
|Subaru||Division||Global, except Mexico and Korea|
|26. Great Wall Motor Company, Ltd ( China)|
|Great Wall||Division||China, Taiwan, South Africa, Russia, North Africa, Australia, Europe, Middle East|
|27. Isuzu Motors, Ltd ( Japan)|
|Isuzu||Division||Global, except Brazil and Korea|
|28. Anhui Jianghuai Automobile Company, Ltd ( China)|
|JAC||Division||China, Africa, Brazil|
|29. Brilliance China Automotive Holding, Ltd ( China)|
|Brilliance||Division||China, North Africa|
|30. SAIC Motor ( China)|
|Maxus||Division||China, Australia, South Africa, United Kingdom, Chile, Malaysia|
|MG Motor||Subsidiary||China, United Kingdom, South America, Australia|
|31. BYD Auto ( China)|
|BYD||Division||China, Taiwan, Russia, United States, Canada|
|32. Mahindra & Mahindra, Ltd ( India)|
|Mahindra||Division||India, South East Asia, Europe, North Africa, North America, Australia|
|SsangYong||Subsidiary||Global, except North America and Japan|
|33. AB Volvo ( Sweden)|
|Mack||Subsidiary||United States, Canada, Mexico, Venezuela, Peru, Australia|
|Renault Trucks||Subsidiary||Global, except Japan, United States and Canada|
|34. China Changan Automotive ( China)|
|China Changan Automotive||Subsidiary||China|
|35. Iran Khodro Company ( Iran)|
|Iran Khodoro||Division||Middle East,Northern Africa, Russia, Belarus, Central Asia, China, Venezuela|
|IKCO Diesel||Division||Middle East, Northern and Western Africa|
|36. Chongqing Lifan Automobile Company, Ltd ( China)|
|Lifan||Division||China, Taiwan, Russia, Middle East, South America|
|37. Proton Holdings, Bhd ( Malaysia)|
|Proton||Division||South East Asia, Japan?, South Africa, United Kingdom, Middle East|
|38. Jiangling Motors ( China)|
|39. Fujian Motors Group ( China)|
|King Long||Joint-Venture||China, South East Asia, India, North America, Europe, Middle East, Australia, New Zealand|
|Xiamen Golden Dragon||Joint-Venture||China, South East Asia, Middle East, Africa, South America|
|Higer Bus||Joint-Venture||China,South Asia, Middle East, Africa, Russia, Eastern Europe, United States, Canada, Central America, South America|
|40. Kuozui Motors, Ltd ( Taiwan)|
|41. China National Heavy Duty Truck Group ( China)|
|42. Hunan Jiangnan Automobile ( China)|
|43. Paccar Inc. ( United States)|
|DAF Trucks||Subsidiary||Global, except North America and Japan|
|Kenworth||Division||North America, Australia|
|Leyland Trucks||Subsidiary||Global, except North America and Japan|
|44. GAZ ( Russia)|
|GAZ||Division||Russia, Europe, Central Asia|
|45. Shaanxi Automobile Group ( China)|
|46. Qingling Motors Company Ltd. ( China)|
|47. Ashok Leyland ( India)|
|Ashok Leyland||Division||South Asia, Middle East, East Africa|
|48. Navistar International Corporation ( United States)|
|eStar||Division||United States, Canada|
|IC||Subsidiary||United States, Canada|
|International||Division||North America, South America, Russia, Middle East, Egypt, South Africa|
|??. Fiat Industrial S.p.A ( Italy)|
|Irisbus||Subsidiary||Global, except North America|
|??. Oshkosh Corporation ( United States)|
|Oshkosh||Division||USA, Canada, China|
|??. Yulon Motor ( Taiwan)|
|Luxgen||Division||Taiwan, China, Oman|
|??. Shandong Kaima ( China)|
|??. Guangzhou Automobile Industry Group Co Ltd ( China)|
|Changfeng||Subsidiary||China, Russia, Middle East, Africa|
|??. Micro (cars) ( Sri Lanka)|
|Micro (cars)||Division||Sri Lanka|
|??. Rongcheng Hawtai Automobile ( China)|
|??. Caterpillar Inc. ( United States)|
|CAT||Division||United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand|
By total production
Quantifying the total production of a manufacturer, from their start-up, is a difficult task, because of frequent company ownership changes. However some producers, and independent sources, provide some valuable statistics:
Minor automotive manufacturers
There are many automobile manufacturers other than the major global companies. They are mostly regional or operating in niche markets.
- Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers
- Automotive industry by country
- Automotive industry crisis of 2008–2010
- Automotive market
- Big Three automobile manufacturers
- Effects of the 2008-2009 automotive industry crisis on the United States
- List of countries by motor vehicle production
- List of countries by largest auto markets
- Largest automotive companies by revenue
- Scientific and Technical Societies of the United States (Eighth ed.). Washington DC: National Academy of Sciences. 1968. p. 164.
- Georgano, G. N. Cars: Early and Vintage, 1886–1930. (London: Grange-Universal, 1985)
- "U.S. Makes Ninety Percent of World's Automobiles". Popular Science 115 (5): 84. November 1929. Retrieved 15 January 2013.
- "Production Statistics". OICA. Retrieved 9 Seitember 2011.
- 26262-1:2011 ISO, Retrieved 04/25/2013
-  SGS, Functional Safety
-  SGS, Product Recalls in the Automotive Industry
- "Automobile Industry Introduction". Plunkett Research. 2008. Archived from the original on 28 August 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-09.
- Paul A. Eisenstein Building BRIC's: 4 Markets Could Soon Dominate the Auto World at TheDetroitBureau.com
- Bertel Schmitt (15 February 2011). "Auto industry sets new world record". The Truth About Cars. Retrieved 7 August 2011.
- "Global Automotive Outlook for 2011 Appears Positive as Mature Auto Markets Recover, Emerging Markets Continue to Expand". J.D. Power and Associates. 15 February 2011. Retrieved 7 August 2011.
- "U.S. Makes Ninety Percent of World's Automobiles" Popular Science Monthly, November 1929, p. 84.
- "Hyundai Motor Company 2011 annual report". Worldwide.hyundai.com. Retrieved 2012-06-22.
- "World Motor Vehicle Production: World Ranking of Manufacturers Year 2010" (PDF). OICA. Retrieved 2011-08-12.
- "GM Slips to Number Two Worldwide, Ford to Fourth". The Truth About Cars. Archived from the original on 13 May 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-12.
- "TTAC Announces World's Top Ten Automakers". The Truth About Cars. Archived from the original on 5 June 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-12.
|Look up automotive industry in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
- Top Ranking Car Companies
- Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers
- All vehicle manufacturers in the world (in Dutch with English etc. translation)
- Car makes of the world, 1894—present
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