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McKinsey: Mobility’s second great inflection point

Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:17 pm

. . . At the first great inflection point, the fundamental dimensions of transportation—cost, convenience, user experience, safety, and environment—saw “mobility” and “cars” become well-nigh synonymous. That was a dramatic shift from the previous several hundred years, when overland mobility meant horses, which people needed in ever-growing numbers. Emissions problems of a different sort than today’s were an unintended consequence. In 1894, the London Times ran the numbers: at prevailing rates, nine feet of manure would accumulate on city streets by the mid-1940s.2

The amazing developments of 1900–20 represented mobility’s first inflection point. They took us from steam to internal-combustion engines (ICEs), the “Great Horse Manure Crisis” of 1894 to “Big Oil,” and premium automobiles for the few to mass-produced cars for the millions. They also altered and even birthed entire businesses, industries, and government entities that developed alongside, but distinct from, the automotive industry: repair shops, highway authorities, gas stations, commuter railways, and car washes, to name just a few. The landscape has endured for decades.

But for how much longer? By 2030, we’ll see developments that may be as profound as those of a hundred years before. Radical changes—“horses-to-cars” changes, “how-we-think-about-mobility” changes—are coming, even faster this time, and across multiple dimensions. The characteristics of mobility at the second great inflection point will be significantly, not just marginally, better. Electric and autonomous vehicles, more interconnected and intelligent road networks, new customer interfaces and services, and a dramatically different competitive landscape in which tech giants, start-ups, and OEMs mix and mingle are just a few of the shifts in store. Radical improvements in cost-effectiveness, convenience, experience, safety, and environmental impact will, taken together, disrupt myriad business models on an almost inconceivable scale (exhibit).

With any luck, it will be what people actually want—not “faster horses,” but something qualitatively different and better. We call these coming changes mobility’s Second Great Inflection Point. In this article, we’ll explain why we think it’s coming, starting with a look back at the inflection point that took place 100 years ago, including its unintended consequences, and the forces at work pushing toward a new paradigm. . . .

Much, much more. Directly related, also McKinsey:
The trends transforming mobility’s future

. . . While much uncertainty remains about how, exactly, mobility’s “second great inflection point” will unfold, many of the critical building blocks, and their potential, are becoming clear. Key to these developments are four trends most easily remembered by the acronym ACES: autonomous driving, connectivity, the electrification of vehicles, and shared mobility. Another development—the prospect of hydrogen-powered mobility—is worthy of special attention because of its potential importance for electrification.

In this compilation, McKinsey experts provide quick overviews of how each trend is evolving. The mix of analysis, insight, and data-informed prognostication should serve as a useful thought starter for CEOs and senior executives, in any industry, who seek to understand what the mobility transformation underway could mean for them today and tomorrow. . . .
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

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