In 1913, Henry Ford established his assembly line, making way for the future of the auto industry. The future of self-driving cars, custom made cars, electric cars, etc. Because of the luxury of these functions, the engine is becoming unimportant to buyers, who are more focused on the look and interior.
To keep up with this, manufacturers will have to keep up with the changing styles, bringing rapid prototyping in the auto industry. Because of the changing styles, companies have to stay up to date, making the design cycle shorter, each design better than the last, as well as shortening the production time.
The auto industry prototyping market is going to be hitting record highs in the next 2 years. With prototyping increasing so rapidly, certain experimental methods have to be brought in to make these ideas possible, such as 3D printing.
There is a lot that goes in to putting together an automobile including casting, veneering, multiple prototypes, and more. This takes months of failed prototypes until finally finding something that works. And this is JUST the console! The cost of just the gear stick prototype is $1500 and it could need upwards of 10 prototypes.
Additive manufacturing and 3D printing are the reason that rapid prototyping in the auto industry is possible. These allow quick prototypes that look like the finished product, down to the colors and textures of the automobile. Because of these innovations the time-to-market has decreased significantly. With the J750 3D printing, 500,000 colors are now possible. Because color and texture are possible, the auto industry can now 3D print materials that look like wood grain. Some of the most well-known car manufacturers are using these forms of prototyping, saving money and time in the process.
With the increase in the importance of the look rather than the reliability of a car, the work that needs to be done has increased. But with this, the innovation of new production to decrease time and spending has emerged. Henry Ford paved the way for today’s rapid prototyping in the auto industry, even if he didn’t know it. If you want to learn more about this topic, this below whitepaper is for you.