The Automotive Industry

The transportation equipment industry, broadly defined, includes all manufacturers of road, rail, water, and air vehicles, making up the largest component of the US manufacturing sector, constituting 3% of value added in the economy in 2019 when including related industries such as steel and petroleum. It has declined from 6% of the economy in 1955, however, as American passenger car manufacturers were overtaken by the Japanese in the 1980s in units produced, with domestic production peaking in 1979 at 10 million and plunging to 2 million by 2019. Much of this decline has been replaced by foreign imports from overseas, as well as the outsourcing of parts and assembly plants to Mexico under NAFTA. The Big Three American automakers – GM, Ford, and Chrysler – now focus primarily on light truck manufacturing. Tonight, we discuss with an automotive insider how the industry got to where it is today, and how going forward the prospects for electrification and autonomous vehicles are set to change it.

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Myth of the 20th Century – Episode 191 – The Automotive Industry

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Gray says:

    based Gran Turismo 7 outro

    Liked by 2 people

  2. IkeHugh says:

    Whale oil was used in nearly every formulation of transmission fluid until its production and importation was banned in 1972. It has very good heat stability meaning its already very low viscosity doesn’t change a lot at varying temperatures. Transmission failures increased by 8 times by 1975 leading to the mid 70s boom in transmission repair shops. Synthetic whale oil is produced from the wax of the Jojoba seed, and is similar enough to be substituted in transmission fluid. This concludes today’s autism.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Gray says:

      It’s pretty amazing how important whale oil actually was in the function of a lot of machinery. I always assumed it was banned pretty early into the 20th century due to over-whaling. I guess people might be kinda pissed if they realised some stuff is nearly eight times less reliable because we had to save the whales.


      1. IkeHugh says:

        It’s minor topic in the grand scheme of things but I think whaling and its death would be an interesting article/podcast/video. Maybe tie it into the endangered species act since that is how the bans originated.


  3. Elwin S says:

    Adam why are talking through a pillow?


    1. Adam Smith says:

      Had some hardware issues – the final cut had to be run through multiple filters to remove the interference. Should be fixed in the subsequent episodes.


      1. Elwin S says:

        Nonetheless it was an excellent show. Mike is knowledgeable on the subject matter and it shows.

        I imagine a whole series can be developed on management grift and opportunity seeking. There is such a rift between that class and the ever dwindling american engineer class.


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