UK automotive companies lead in implementing AI at scale

01 April 2019 3 min. read

The UK’s automotive sector is one of the fastest to adapt to new artificial intelligence technology, according to a new report. Only 12% of the industry have not made any move to adopt AI in the UK, while only the US has a higher number of operators that have adopted AI at scale.

With the automotive sector facing an increasingly difficult road ahead, companies in the market are increasingly hard pressed to find new ways to improve their bottom lines. In the UK in particular, the pressure is on for firms looking to find ways to improve their value creation. The UK endured a 7% fall in car sales throughout 2018, and while Brexit was predictably cited as a cause of this, the nation’s automotive sector is unlikely to have seen the worst of that particular storm yet – meaning innovation is even more essential.

To that end, AI offers vast implications for engineering, production, supply chain, customer experience, and mobility services. Despite this, progress in AI-driven transformation has been sluggish and uneven due to lingering roadblocks in the automotive sector. However, according to a new study by Capgemini, the UK’s automotive sector is now one of the leading nations when it comes to implementing AI at scale. The firm surveyed 500 executives from large automotive organisations in eight countries to understand how progress in deploying AI at scale can be accelerated.

Status of AI implementation at automotive organizations

The number of automotive companies deploying AI at scale has grown from 7% in 2017 to 10% today, with OEMs generally making better progress than suppliers or dealers. While the US is the outright leader, with 25% of companies implement AI at scale, it is rivalled by the UK at 14%. This makes it the leading country for AI in the automotive sector in Europe by some distance.

While 14% of the UK market now has scaled implementation, 39% at least has selective implementation. This places the UK far ahead of near competitors Germany – which has 12% scaled implementation – and Sweden – which has 35% selective implementation. A third of the UK market is also still going through piloting for AI, meaning it is likely to retain this lead on its nearest rivals. It also has the lowest number of companies to have not implemented any AI initiatives at all, at 12%.

State of AI implementation at automotive organizations - by country

With that being said, China in particular is making huge strides in the automotive AI field, having nearly doubled its share of scaled AI implementations from 5% to 9%. This has seen it pass the markets of France and Italy in the process. While it is true that all nations have seen growth in terms of AI in their automotive sector, it is also true that there is a great deal more room to expand such proficiencies.

Capgemini’s researchers added, “By responsibly and ethically infusing AI technologies across their business, organisations can achieve business transformation through greater operational efficiency, boost sales and loyalty through a human-centered customer experience, assist risk analysis, detect fraud, ensure regulatory compliance, and augment employee productivity.”