From motorcycles, sports cars, used cars and trucks to manufacturing, dealerships, leasing and fleets, or industry car shows... the areas that are incorporated under the heading of the automotive industry are wide-ranging.
Millions of people are employed in this field and despite the fluctuations of the marketplace, the industry is healthy, thriving and growing. Competition is fierce, but that only makes the end products better.
Leading edge developments include research and development on new, greener models like hybrid cars and alternative fuel engines, or finding new ways to increase safety and mileage.
Meanwhile, as the electronics system takes the wheel, the promised rise of the "robot army" may just be the development of a real driverless car. Fact or science fiction?
Fact is, a number of consumer surveys say more than 50% of car owners are ready to give driverless cars a go, although Industry insiders say that the future of driverless car is still fairly limited. For example, a computer system's ability to recognize a traffic cop's hand gestures -- or the technology to keep every road map in the country constantly updated -- is still more in the realm of science fiction. For now, at least.
Today, the real automotive biz is still in the business of discovering what drives sales on current models and in different demographics. All things considered, the tipping point for soccer moms may really be the addition of an extra cupholder.
Around the Web, take a an extensive look at the current situation and go behind the scenes at a major
worldwide industry that helps put millions of people in the driver's seat.
More about the automotive industry around the Web:
OICA - Find discussions on issues facing the worldwide auto market with information on fuels, safety, worldwide production statistics, calendar of international auto shows and more from the International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers
Automotive News - This comprehensive industry directory is a first rate guide to what's going on behind the scenes with automakers, suppliers, organizations and resources.
Just-Auto - Stay up-to-date on the global automotive industry including daily blog posts, news by sector, forum discussions, job listings.
Automotive World - International industry news headlines and feature stories, with more in-depth studies & reports for subscribers, free newsletter.