Best Future Automotive Maintenance Technology Considered

As a lover of technology, perhaps you too, I think I can surely relate with those who find revolutionary Google Glass applications. Such technology is a long time coming and much like 3-D printing it will change everything. Having been in the automotive sector prior to retirement (Franchisor of mobile car wash businesses) my mind usually looks at all new technology for possible automotive applications. Okay so, let’s see how this new innovation will be taken to a whole new level – let’s talk.

There was an interesting article in MIT Technology Review Blog on September 17, 2013 titled; “Google Glass as a Hands-Free Instruction Manual – A new app for Google’s head-mounted computer helps beginners with car maintenance,” by Tom Simonite which got me thinking about a once promising technology someone had come up with ten years ago, but which to date has not been implemented. The article stated; “Augmented reality company Metaio just released video of an idea that seems to make more use of the form of Google Glass.”

The article accompanied a YouTube video titled; “Metaio to Unveil First Hands-Free Car Manual on Google Glass,” by a company that has such an application ready for action.

Yes, this might be even better than the concept MIT was working on for Boeing with holographic displays alongside equipment being worked on – which would be an extension of their now decade old tablet display units. The Google Glass takes it all to a new level, better than anything or better than anyone could imagine. Essentially, you could work in a duality – blending the real world with the virtual one – immersed in instructions from an augmented 3-D image overlaying your work station or work. That is essentially what we are talking about here.

Think about seeing the object you are working on in 4-D, that is to say you’d be able to see inside the engine or motor you are working on, into the interior components, all they while you are working on the outside components removing shrouds, covers, and parts. Imagine working on a piece of infrastructure or jet engine and your Google Glass was hooked up to sensors, allowing you to see the problem in the interior as you are working. All live, all connected, and all-knowing – cool right – I know!

Think what this will do for car racing, prototype building, or the local dealership fixing, maintaining or updated your electric Tesla sports sedan. Yes, awesome. Please consider all this and think on it.

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Automotive Franchises Travel to New Destinations

Washing cars at home with soapy water of detergents is a thing of the past. The practice of self cleaning of cars was quite time consuming and never gave the expected results. Being the 21st century the automotive franchise sector has also grown tremendously offering new services and leisure. The increasing number of automotive franchises is leading to emergence of lot of car wash brands in the segment. Car-care service centres not only wash the cars but also maintain them.

Automotive franchise: Unorganised to organised

No doubt car wash segment is still dominated by unorganised brands, but the industry is gradually moving from unorganised to organised segment. Gauging the rise in the sector lsome of the players have taken the franchise route. Anckur Sama, Founder and Director of CarzSpa said, “We entered into this industry four years back with one outlet, but today, we have around 25 outlets across India. The idea of switching over to car beauty clinic hit me from one of my foreign visits where I saw such centres flourishing. I liked the concept of grooming cars to perfection. Hence my profession of selling cars coupled with a passion of grooming cars brought me into this business.”

Need of car care centres

Increasing awareness regarding maintaining cars is the first and foremost reason for the popularity of car care centres. Earlier car owners used to get their vehicles cleaned from local car cleaners, as they had no other option, however now with the availability of car care centres people prefer to get their cars cleaned professionally. Various other factors contributing to the increasing popularity of car care centres are:

Increased car owners: With cars becoming purchasable for the middle class, there has been a rapid increase in the number of car-owners. Clients who have spent over Rs two lakh to two crore for a car do not want to spoil it by washing it at home. This had lead to the popularity of organised car centres.

Increase in disposable incomes: With increase in disposable incomes, people do not mind spending a few extra bucks on the care and maintenance of their cars.

Hectic work schedule: Cleaning a car is a long and a tiring work. Usually people do not have the time or enthusiasm to wash cars due to lack of time. The best substitute for them is the car-wash centre.

Proper maintenance: Organised car care centres not only wash and clean cars but also maintain them perfectly. They do a complete check-up of cars, which make them worth-while for each penny that a customer pays.

Why franchising of car- care centres?

Car-care has emerged as a popular business concept due to its need in the Indian market. Smart entrepreneurs who had seen the vast potential in this business had started small but later on took the franchise route. The reason for expansion through franchising is the well-established brand name. Clients always prefer to send their cars for cleaning to a well-established and reputed centre rather than an unorganised washing unit. Sama shared, ‘Franchising has always been the preferred route for business development. It becomes very difficult for one company to handle the entire business across the country hence we require entrepreneurs to run the show in different cities and locations for further development and success.”

Moreover this sector does not require huge investment for its set up. However, keeping expensive machines and a large workforce would increase the budget.

Players in this field

This is a growing segment with not many players but the car-care business shows great potential for future. The main players in this segment till now are CarzSpa, Express Car wash, Speed Car Wash, Pureshield Car Glass Sealant and 3M Car care. All these payers are successfully expanding via the franchise route.

Challenges for success

The car-care franchise may have many benefits but also has a few drawbacks.

Firstly many aspirants enter the arena with big dreams of making fast cash. Like any other business, there is a lot of hard work in car washing business. Aspirants take a franchise believing that there are machines to do work and staff to manage it. However it should be kept in mind that even the owner (franchisee) has to struggle. As said by Sama, “To create sufficient footfalls and business in initial months is a challenge for an automotive franchise. We can overcome these challenges with low budget marketing advertisement and good services so that the customers become our permanent clients.”

Secondly, the competition from the unorganised players is another challenge that can be dealt with by providing excellent services and showing professionalism.

To conclude, it would not be inappropriate to say that current trends certainly favour the automotive franchise business. People are spending huge amount on expensive vehicles, and are ready to spent few extra bucks in keeping their cars in a excellent condition and the preferred choice would always be a branded car-wash centre. There is definitely a large potential for aspiring entrepreneurs as, ‘No matter what happens, it is likely that as long as there are cars, there will always be a need for car wash’.

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The Automotive Employment Market Is Still an Open Playing Field

In the automotive employment market there are still very attractive job opportunities available all over the world. So if you are in the automotive employment market and want to make a change there are still a lot of opportunities all over the world.

In this modern world there do exist a massive shortage highly skilled automotive technicians all over the world. So if you are a highly skilled auto technician you can choose where you want to work in the world.

By just applying on one of the many automotive recruitment companies web pages, and they will search a job opportunity for you any place in the world. The fact is that a lot of emerging automotive markets have opened up in reasoned years, due to the power shift in the automotive industry.

This automotive employment market is going to become even bigger in the future as all new type of cars is going to hit the market. Like all the “EV” cars that are still in the prototype phase. All these cars will have new technology implemented into them, so new personnel must be trained to work on them in the future.

This will bring a paradigm shift into this automotive employment market, even the training methods and the skill sets that must be trained have to change in the very near future.

This will cause the manufacturers to start running extensive training and develop programs, to have highly skilled technicians to assist them to establish their brand. There will be coming new brands and brand name into the playing field and these brands will need to still build their names in the market place.

To build a brand name you need a powerful after sales service you can assist your customers with. This alone will create a new automotive employment market to the auto industry; just imagine an electronic or chemical engineer working at your local car dealership.

It may sound farfetched but it is possible as the cars in the future will be driven with power plants like fuel cells, hydrogen emission and electric motors. All of this is going to come to the market place in this modern world sooner than most of us do realize. So the predictions are that a big portion of the existing automotive workforce will leave.

They will leave this workforce as they are from the old school with old school principles that will become extinct with this new technology. The human tendencies are that you will stay ignorant if you become a member of the old school club. This only happens as the older people were conditioned that they can only learn something up to a certain age. All of us know this is not true but the system wants them to leave as it is harder to change and old horse to get rid of his or her habits

The system was created to develop a group of slaves that would be easier to condition, into what this slave system needs and not what the workers needs. That is one of the reasons why the older leading hands in the automotive employment market gets removed or retrenched. The general modern business conceptions are that older people are resisters to modern business, as they don’t want to change.

If all this highly skilled people are removed in the future the whole automotive industry will suffer a massive skills and brain lost that could have passed on to the younger people. Findings are that most of this older people in the automotive industry don’t want to share their knowledge and skills anymore, because they don’t see themselves as resistors for future development in the automotive industry.

So the automotive employment market will suffer great losses in the near future, due to this phenomenon.

Rocco van Rooyen is an Author on Automotive Solutions. As an Entrepreneur and Author on the subject, he is at the forefront to provide solutions to all automotive related problems.

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Automotive Manufacturer Software Solutions

The automotive manufacturing industry began small, with early autos being little more than replacements for the horse drawn buggies of the day. They used a steam or gas engine to replace the work done by the horse. Then, with Henry Ford’s innovative assembly line concepts, the automotive industry picked up speed. No longer were cars built one at a time by skilled craftsmen, now they could be built many at a time and the level of skill the workers needed was greatly reduced as they only worked on one part of the machine, over and over. The problems facing an automotive manufacturer like Henry Ford were certainly much different than they are today. The process of assembling a Model T was by any modern standard few steps and very simple ones as well.

Today’s automotive manufacturer has to design and implement processes to cover a wide range of issues Henry Ford could never have imagined. With hydraulic, electrical, computer and drive systems all failure prone areas which require accurate, concise processes to be assembled efficiently and reliably, more than just the human touch is required. That is where the computers of the modern age come in. More specifically, that is where automotive manufacturing software solutions come into play.

How Can Software Help?

There are very few industries today that don’t leverage the benefits of manufacturing management software and the auto industry is no different. Putting together a modern car relies on many thousands of processes coming together and working seamlessly together. Without some kind of automotive manufacturing software solution, tracking and monitoring all of these processes would be an impossible task. By using software for process management, countless hours of tedious process design and testing can be accomplished on the computer, not on the factory floor where every part wasted and minute of downtime count.

What Can It Do?

Process management software can do many things, depending on the product used. The most beneficial will feature a robust system allowing for total commercial automotive manufacturer software integration. These suites can allow you to build your process on the computer, not through trial and error. Once a process is completed, testing itself can be done in this virtual space. The process can then be implemented and monitored, helping to find portions of the process that can be done more efficiently or safely, with the changes then applied in real time to the process itself. This level of control can be applied to any number of processes allowing for even the most complex production to be broken down into its constituent components.

Where To Find More Information Online?

There are many good places to find more information about automotive manufacturer software solutions online. Some good places to start include researching on Google and looking at some of the top manufacturing software web sites. Choosing the right application for your business may take some time. However, implementing a successful automotive process management software system can offer a huge return. Take your time and you will reap the rewards.

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A Story for the Australian Automotive Industry

Introduction to the Topic

Australia is one of only a few countries with the capabilities to design cars from scratch and manufacture in significant volumes. Car sales in Australia are also an important factor of the Australian Automotive Industry and the Australian Economy in total.

The Australian Auto Industry (A.A.I. in short) can be divided into two interrelated sectors, the Production ( Manufacturing) sector and the Car Sales (or Import-Sales) sector, both equally important for the total performance of the A.A.I. On one hand, the Manufacturing sector refers to the market conditions under which Australian Manufacturing businesses compete, by producing vehicles and related products, with the main aim of maximizing profits. On the other hand, the Sales sector refers to the market conditions under which car representative sale businesses compete, by the sale of cars and related products, having the same aim with businesses within sector one.

It is very important to state the distinction between these two sectors within the A.A.I., as we will be talking about two different market structures, business strategies, competition conditions, e.t.c. In order to analyse these market structures it would be appropriate to develop two economic models, one for each A.A.I. sector.

1.1-Analyzing the Manufacturing Sector

There is only one market structure that can best describe the market conditions in the Manufacturing sector if A.A.I., this is Oligopoly. As there are only two organizations that produce cars in Australia, and these are Ford and Holden, the competition methods and pricing strategies are based between these two organizations. The following economic model shall help define the competition and economic conditions for the Australian Automotive Manufacturing market.

The first important characteristic of Oligopoly that needs to be stated is that prices between competitors tend to be “sticky”, which means that they change less frequently than any other market structure. This statement will be explained in more detail later on, when we will be developing the Game-Theory model, as it is a very important concept of competition. The second most important characteristic is that when prices do change, firms are likely to change their pricing policies together. These two characteristics can boost up competition within the market. Firms will either try to match rivals’ price changes or ignore them. This is depended on the Game-Theory that is explained bellow.

However, the recent market conditions for the Australian Automotive Industry and the actions of the Australian Government have worsen the competition conditions and possible pricing options available for firms in the market. The production and maintenance costs for a manufacturing business in Australia are already high and rising, mostly due to lack of economic resources and advance of technology. That is, as Holden and Ford try to compete each other, given that prices tend to be “sticky”, they are forced to focus on technological advantage and marketing. Both of these business sectors produce high costs. Furthermore, the Australian government has made it clear that is unwilling to further subsidize automotive organizations in the market. All these factors stated above produce a negative effect on the competitiveness of both firms. In other words, rising costs alongside with decreased revenue push firms in experiencing lower and decreasing levels of profitability.

Profitability and the level of competitiveness are highly interrelated in an oligopolistic market structure, being the two most important factors, alongside with product differentiation, in the competition policies that the firms follow. When we say that the level of competitiveness of a firm is very low, we mean that the firm cannot react effectively to any price changes or competition changes or even changes in production costs. This may leave the firm depended on its’ competitor’s pricing and competition actions, not being able to affect the market competitiveness at all. The firm is then exposed to external danger and can be pushed out of the market, or even worse to shut production and declare bankrupt.

1.2- The Game-Theory Model for Oligopoly

The Game Theory model is used to explain the pricing and competition policies of firms in an oligopolistic market structure. Furthermore, it can show the few different competition policies based on pricing that the two firms can follow, that is High and Low as stated above. All firms in this market structure follow a Game-Theory model, although it is surely more detailed than our example, in the process of trying to forecast competitors’ pricing and competition movements and also keep track of the competition levels in the market and market share. But how does this happen?

For example, let’s say that there are four different fields, each divided in half. These fields represent the pricing strategies that Holden and Ford may use in the process of competing each other. Field A and C represent a High-Pricing policy for Holden, while fields A and B represent a High-Pricing policy for Ford. Lastly, fields B and D represent a Low-Pricing policy for Holden, while fields C and D represent a Low-Pricing policy for Ford. When both firms decide to follow a High-Pricing policy they share a profit of, let’s say, $12 million. If Holden decided to move to a Low-Pricing policy it will experience a maximum of $15 million profit, while Ford’s profitability will fall to $6 million. The exact opposite may also occur, while if both firms decided to follow a Low-Pricing policy they would realize a maximum of $8 million of profit.

What we can identify from the above example is that firms in an oligopolistic competitive market rarely change their pricing policies because this may produce a negative effect on their profitability levels. However, Holden and Ford, being the only two firms in the Australian Automotive Industry, they will focus on competing through product differentiation and marketing. That is, they will try to compete by differentiating their products, for example by producing vehicles with different features, or even base their production on technological advantage. Marketing plays an important role here, as it is the main tool that delivers and connects the customer with product. For example, if Holden introduces a new driving technology that improves driving experience and safety and produces this technology alongside with a newly designed vehicle, it is quite likely that Holden will effectively differentiate its newly designed vehicle from a relative vehicle of Ford and lure more customers in the store. Holden may also use marketing techniques to deliver this technology to the public, in the form of knowledge; hence try to boost sales without changing its pricing policy. However, it is important to state that this new technology may produce higher production costs, if not evaluated properly; hence Holden can only rely in increasing its market share to gain greater profitability. The sales part, however, will be analyzed in more extend within the next chapter of this report.

The Game-Theory is not just a theory for the Automotive Industry in Australia, it’s a fact. It shows us that auto manufacturers in Australia have based their competition strategies on all the factors stated above and as much as they possibly can on pricing strategies. They may advertise that they have low prices, but in fact their prices are very stable. If we have a close look at Holden’s or Ford’s websites, we will identify that there is a huge variety of products and each firm competes in that. However, the new market conditions stated before have greatly changed the way auto manufacturers think of the future and this in turn may change their pricing and competition policies, or even determine their existence in the market.

2.1- Analyzing the Import/Sales Sector

While the auto manufacturers are considered to be operating in an oligopolistic market structure, importing and selling vehicles or relative products is a different story. The import and sale of vehicles is the second and equally important business sector of the Australian Automotive Industry. There are many different car selling businesses and we shall only consider first-hand sales, as second-hand sales in general are not included in economics and more specifically in GDP measurements. To enter the industry hard at all as there are not many barriers to entry, however someone who is interested needs to consider of the high costs in setting up an automotive dealership. All businesses in this market are mostly based on product differentiation to compete and while prices are not “sticky”, pricing competition is set up by the market mechanism and tends not to be considered a regular phenomenon. Lastly, cost analysis and cost management play a very important role. All of the above characteristics refer to the Monopolistic Competition Market Structure. In this market structure we will focus on two phases, the short-run phase and the long-run phase, each with different competition characteristics and outcomes.

An important factor that we need to state here is that when the costs of developing a vehicle in the manufacturing sector rise, then the cost for selling the vehicle for a dealership may rise as well. This is always depended of course on if the vehicle was produced in Australia and if it was produced overseas, under what economic conditions was it produced. Price might be “sticky” for manufacturers, however prices will change much easier in this sector if needs be. Here firms will change their pricing policies if costs either rise or fall and this is always depended on the market mechanism. The amount of competitiveness along with the amount of price elasticity of demand will depend on how many rivals the monopolistic competitive firm will have to face.

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The Benefits of Stainless Steel Roller Chains

Typically, roller chains can be found in a lot of mechanically powered systems. For instance, you can find them in a number of environments like automotive industries and agriculture systems. Examples of automotive industries they are used in are bicycles and motorcycles. In this article, we are going to take a closer look at some of the common benefits of roller chains made of stainless steel. Read on to find out more.

Rollers chains are also commonly used in conveyor belts and many other industrial assembly environments. Aside from this, you can find these systems in many other environments too.

Advantages of Stainless Steel Roller Chains

Although these products are made of other metals as well, stainless steel is the most common one. This is because this metal offers a lot of benefits. Some of them are listed below. Please note that this list doesn’t talk about all the benefits the unit offers.

Food Applications

Stainless steel roller chains are quite popular in the food industry for many reasons. One of the main reasons is that the steel offers immense strength unlike other metal types you can find and use.

Therefore, products made of this metal can withstand even extreme conditions. Another good thing is that it’s much easier to clean. For instance, in an environment where food packaging, processing and handling is done, you may need to clean the chain more frequently. This is what makes these roller chains a great choice.

Temperature Resistance

Another great thing about these roller chains is that they can work fine even if you place them in an environment where temperature exceeds 400 Celsius. In the same way, they won’t stop working even if you use them in a place where temperature drops below -20 Celsius. This is what makes it an ideal choice in environments that are not good for other metals.

Corrosion Resistance

They are also corrosion resistant even if used in acidic or alkaline environments. In many industries, these roller chains are used either in alkaline or acidic settings. This is why they are preferred in a lot of industries. Aside from this, it offers quite low magnetic permeability. Therefore, we suggest that you opt for them instead of other options out there.

Heat-Treated

Another good thing about these chains is that they are heat treated for a lot better temperature resistance. Plus, they are put under a lot of stress for testing purposes to reduce the chances of stretching issues or premature leakage. So, as far as safety is concerned, this is the best choice you can take. They can save you a lot of money due to their long lifespan.

Long story short, these are some of the most common reasons why these roller chains are quite popular these days. Although they can’t be the best option for all types of applications, they can work well in many environments. Therefore, if you want to opt for them, we suggest that you give them a go. You won’t regret your choice.

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