If all you can afford to watch during the week are short videos, save this one for when you have more time. If Sean Mitchell and Sandy Munro talk about the future of the automotive industry, that certainly deserves our full attention. To sum the video up, Munro made his bets on the future of the automotive industry. You may disagree with him, but he believes in verticalization, electric trikes, and fuel cells.
Munro has already spoken about verticalization dozens of times. However, this video makes us understand a little better why he believes this is the right way to go. If you develop what you need instead of simply buying from suppliers, you create a competitive advantage that will make your products stand above the others, such as Tesla has done with the Octovalve.
The engineer even bets it was designed by SpaceX, as well as the heat pump. According to Munro, these are two great examples of non-automotive design. As long as things work as planned and have strict quality control, that's the best way to go. He also praises that Tesla has created its three mega castings and that this will kill body shops as we know them. A little bird even told him Tesla bought another 11 high-pressure die casting machines, probably from the IDRA Group.
Apart from Tesla, there are other car companies that believe very much in verticalization. According to Munro, they are Volkswagen and Toyota, in that order. It is probably not by chance that they are also the largest automakers in market cap after Tesla: investors know how much value proprietary designs hold.
In that sense, Munro believes suppliers that do not offer something relevant to carmakers in their way to electric mobility are toast. That is likely the reason for Foxconn and Magna Steyr to be developing open source electric car platforms. Or for Continental to help Volkswagen with massive servers for its over-the-air future updates. Anyone selling transmissions or pistons is in deep trouble, according to the engineer.
When he spoke about his new projects, Munro said it was COVID-19 and the pandemic economic crisis that landed them in his lap. Not only that but also his YouTube channel, which drove these companies to know more about his work and ask for his help. By the way, the engineer confirmed he is working with Aptera, something Chris Anthony had already told us.
For Munro, trikes are the answer for increasingly crowded roads. There’s no reason for driving an SUV in big cities if you are riding alone and when a smaller and more energy-efficient vehicle can also take you places comfortably and safely. This is why he bests on all the four trikes he is working on. Apart from Aptera, there’s also Arcimoto, Nobe, and the Visionary 3EV, from Malcolm Bricklin.
Regarding hydrogen and fuel cells, Munro said they are “the way to go,” especially when Australians manage to make the gas cheaply and to store it in what looks like a brick. He probably meant the nanomaterials that are supposed to store hydrogen without the need for high-pressure tanks. The engineer believes 2021 will bring us news about that.
Again, we have just picked some of the most interesting points of Munro’s conversation with Mitchell. We watched all 43 minutes of it, and it was a time well spent. Make sure you do the same when you can.
Source: Sean Mitchell