Cars have become more than just a mode of transportation for consumers. Improved fuel economy, safety and drivability are welcome additions, but drivers are looking for more in their driving experience. They view their automobile as an extension of themselves and look for an interactive, customized, luxury experience, which is why new technologies have been brought in to meet that very demand. Knobs, buttons and overhead lighting have been replaced by touchscreens, capacitive sensing and mood lighting, allowing the driver to be encapsulated in his or her own styling preferences.
In order for automakers to maintain or capture market share, it is essential for them to focus on what customers want, through product customization, and more specifically that of automotive interiors that most influence the consumer’s overall driving experience. Product customization is, however, one of several considerations original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) have to take into account to remain competitive in the market. Productivity, cost control and environmental concerns also come into play.