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March 18, 2015 1 min read

One of the more advanced technologies used in cars today is the application of radar, lasers or cameras to sense what is happening ahead, allowing the driver, or even the vehicle itself, to react in a proactive way to avoid a potential crash.

It’s this sense of predicting the road ahead that automotive industry leaders are going to have to build into their own thinking. Yes, looking ahead is something executives always need to do, but right now the stakes are particularly high.

Suppliers, in particular, need to have a plan that accounts for likely scenarios 10 years from now that may include Silicon Valley giants engineering cars that drive themselves.

This is no small change.

If you really want to get a sense of the threat, consider that Apple is sitting on $178 billion in cash reserves and looking for new technology investments.

Apple and Google are drawn to this market because cars will become increasingly loaded with technology. Higher margins will also come from this shift. This is where much of the future profit potential for an auto supplier is at risk.

So, could Apple and Google join Tesla in taking on the automotive sector at their own game?