Auto Manufacturing

Auto manufacturing is a complex, multi-step process. Not only is the auto manufacturing process interesting, it also helps fuel the world's economy. In this section you'll find articles all about auto manufacturing.


There are a lot of vanilla vehicles being churned out these days. What's the deal?

You check the mail and notice that you've gotten another recall notice about some defect in your vehicle. Seems like they send them every day. But in reality, car companies do all they can to avoid a vehicle recall.

The best part of getting a new car is that new car smell, right? Well, don't breathe it in too deeply — that smell is produced by hundreds of chemicals, many of them harmful.

Electric vehicles always seem to look so shiny and new. Shiny, yes — but they're not necessarily new. Turns out electric cars have been around since long before the Model T.

There's perhaps no single person more associated with the automobile than Henry Ford, who's credited with bringing the car to the masses. But did Ford actually invent the car?

It had to seat five occupants. It had to be easy to maintain. It had to be capable of traveling quickly on the autobahn and be affordable on an average salary. Was the VW Beetle really a Nazi design?

It's common knowledge that dark colors absorb heat while light colors reflect it. But does that really mean that black cars tend to get hotter in the summer?

There's nothing quite like the smell of a new car interior. It's not exactly a fresh scent, but it's definitely an unused scent. So what really causes that "new car smell"?

Henry Ford didn't just build cars — he totally revolutionized the process, inventing new systems and methods that are still in use today. But is everything you've heard about the man accurate?

Each year, auto manufacturers issue about 500 recalls. Most of them are small, inexpensive, easy to repair and not terrifying at all. These are not those recalls.

For a long time, a group of female automotive plastics workers in Canada knew their work environment was unpleasant and probably sickening. But they didn't know it could actually be fatal.

Carbon fiber is one of the lightest and strongest materials used in auto manufacturing; however, it's expensive and time consuming to produce. Has it already been replaced by something better?

There's a deep level of our brain that controls survival functions, like hunger, breathing, and fight-or-flight responses. It's called the reptilian brain. Oddly enough, it chooses the cars we buy, too.

The metal cutting tools and techniques used by automakers require both precision and speed. But how do auto manufacturers maintain that balance? And what are the tools (and tricks) of the trade?

Man's ability to form metal into useful shapes dates back thousands of years; however, over the last century our metal-forming technologies have dramatically improved. Modern cars are proof of that.

Automotive paint finishes do more than boost aesthetics; they also protect the rest of the car. What goes into applying a vehicle's finish before it gets to you?

You're probably aware that modern auto manufacturers use lots of plastic in the production process. But do you know the reasons why they use plastics? Or how they do it?

Designing a car is tougher than it looks -- pencil and paper just won't cut it these days. Computer-aided design (CAD) software makes the job easier, but will it eventually replace human automotive designers?

If you've ever driven a brand new car, then you may have noticed how smoothly it runs and how everything is in working order. But how are vehicles fine-tuned to give you that new car experience?

Nobody wants a car that looks (or feels) like it was hastily put together at the factory. But are automakers really paying more attention to the details now than they were in the past?

Interior car panels cover wiring and motors, protect windows and keep you safe during impact. How are these panels constructed and installed?

Several materials have long been used to create some common and unexpected automobile parts, but a few new substances are gaining ground in the industry. Which materials are used the most in auto manufacturing?

General Motors, Ford and Chrysler satisfied American automotive lust for decades -- until Japanese automakers began to dominate the market. What do companies like Toyota, Subaru and Hyundai do differently?

In the auto industry, the quality control process starts long before the first cars ever roll off the assembly line. In fact, by that point, most of the kinks have already been worked out.

The third-generation Toyota Prius is in dealer showrooms right now. Has Prius engineering really changed much over the years? If so, what are the updates?

#}