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Automotive Industry: A Research Guide

Automobile Manufacturing & Technology

Mounting automobile body on chassis, Detroit, Mich.. .1917. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

The automobile industry has undergone significant changes due to advancements in hybrid and fully electric vehicles, and self-driving cars, in addition to the semiconductor industry's growth. Manufacturing cars involve materials such as steel, glass, plastic, rubber, textiles, and electronics, and knowledge of logistics and materials planning, tool and test design, robotics, manufacturing systems, final assembly tests, packaging, and shipping.

The three main types of cars are gas-powered, hybrid (HEV), and electric (EVs). Gas-powered vehicles are fueled by gasoline and use an internal combustion engine. Gasoline is available in three levels: regular, mid-grade, and premium. The cost of gas is not just determined by the choice of vehicle but is also influenced by global events and crude oil prices. Several automakers are transitioning away from gas-powered cars and moving towards electric vehicles. Electric vehicles (EVs) are fully electric and eco-friendly and rely on batteries that need to be plugged in, thereby eliminating fuel costs. Hybrid or HEV (hybrid electric vehicles) use a traditional gasoline engine and an electric motor. Furthermore, HEVs and EVs require charging of their rechargeable batteries. There are three charging levels based on the type of electric vehicle purchased.

This section provides books and electronic resources for overviews of car manufacturing. For more current information, such as reports, news, and journal articles, see the sections on industry news and analysis and subscription databases within this guide.

Printed Books

The following titles link to fuller bibliographic information in the Library of Congress Online Catalog. Links to additional online content are included when available.