Evolution of safety equipment in the Premium C-segment from 2007 to 2012 – Source: MAPFRE
The segments of automobile is based on two key variables: the size and what client type are directed. According to the spatial needs are more or less large, and the bigger, more expensive. There is a high relationship between size and price, but not in a proportional way. That is to say, a car of 5 meters there is a bit more expensive than one of 4 feet, it is much more expensive, the cost of manufacture aside, as it is given to people with greater purchasing power.
models Are more exclusive and expensive that they tend to benefit first from the latest breakthrough technologies, as the additional costs that imply you can pay more easily for customers with more well-to-do. Items such as the ABS, the airbag or the adaptive cruise control (radar) was released in high-end vehicles several years in advance to the cars in the lot.
The ABS was soon made almost 30 years in Europe
The time that is required from a technology is going to reach all the segments would not only be shortened. Manufacturers to develop first the technology for the high-end models, or those models that are going to be a huge volume. The higher the order of the providers, the lower will be the price that you ask for the new facilities.
platforms and common components can reduce manufacturing costs and be able to employ more resources to technology and security
For example, Volkswagen adopted the policy of large volume for the derivatives of the MQB platform. The money that is saved to the unify multiple platforms in an adaptable, and unifying engines, it was able to dedicate in extend the equipment available for the models based on that platform. Do not confuse this with standard equipment, because many things remain optional.
The marginal cost of adapting one and another model does not but lower
once you have recovered the costs of the technologies from high-end or high volume, we can democratize their use in the segments less profitable. For example, it makes no sense for Ford to develop elements such as automatic braking with detection of pedestrians for suvs and vans. It would take a long time to recover the investment, since the client is very sensitive to price increases.
In the case of this manufacturer, we opted to unify designs across the world, the policy of One Ford, to be able to offer technological equipment at a more affordable cost. The advances that debuted as the Focus are already reaching the entire range, even the commercial vehicles. Only 15 years ago this type of vehicles could not be more rudimentary or go worse equipped. so Things like airbags and air conditioning were luxuries!
The technology of automatic braking is now available in the light-duty Ford, the first of its category
The segments most humble start to have access to items which were unthinkable a short while ago, such as headlamps integrated in LED, cruise control with radar, automatic parking, integrated touch-screens, Internet connection and / or a greater availability of automatic changes.
There are other elements, less likely to be democratized, as suspensions adaptive tare variable, high-performance brakes, leather seats (the truth, not the synthetic or mixed), night vision cameras/infrared, audio equipment, very high-end with 20 speakers, electric system 48-volt or all-wheel drive.
it is True that the Premium brands tend to offer many more things, than normal even in their lower priced models, at the cost of raising the invoice form very noticeable. These marks allow you to equip a compact up to the mast, even if you have the engine more modest, not everyone has the same needs. General practitioners reserve the best equipment for the more expensive versions, or better motor, or both at the same time.
First models with automatic braking tested by EuroNCAP
This democratization does not stop accelerated. In less than a decade we will see driving systems autonomous and connection to the Internet, even on low-end models, though after their establishment in the more expensive models. In the case that the models are unable to offer a reasonable price, will be oriented more to sharing than to the individual property, and the user will pay for the time that you need it.
The paradigm of a small car or cheap car, poorly equipped, is deprecated
Nor can we forget that this democratization has much to do with the lowering of the electronic components in a very broad sense, who put every time to a price that is more affordable the last, or almost last. If we add to that the massive production and price content, the effect feeds back upon itself.
The modern cars will be able to convince us more or less in terms of design, but in terms of technology the jump is still spectacular with respect to two past generations or beyond. Let us recall what was the standard equipment of a model of the 80’s or 90’s, if you already the leap from models of the early 2000’s is already very big today.