How Much Do You Really Know About the Auto Industry?

By: Robin Tyler
Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

It certainly started out small. 

The auto industry that is. But that is to be expected. 

At first, people were skeptical that these new-fangled machines, with their whirring engines, smelly exhaust emissions and terrible noise would be able to replace the old trusty horse and cart.

But that soon changed as the public saw the advantage of the motor carriage, as cars were once called. Soon, in Europe and America, car makers began popping up, making their unique models available for the public to buy.

There was only one slight problem, however. They were not that cheap and certainly out of reach of the ordinary American, for instance. So the car had a rough start in life. A great invention, but only really for those who could afford it.

And then something happened! 

The brilliant Henry Ford started producing the Model T. Not only did he use a production line to help assemble the car, but he used interchangeable parts that came from other models. 

And what that meant was that the Model T was affordable to the ordinary man in the street. It became the car of the people, and that really launched the auto industry. 

Today, the industry is robust in the face of economic pressures and in America, generates over 3% of the total GDP.

So in this quiz, we are going to check your knowledge of not only figures but facts, both modern and older.

Enjoy and good luck!


The number of vehicles to be sold globally in 2017 is?

That's a lot of cars. Despite global economic pressures, that figure is up from 93.9 million in 2016.

How many cars were produced in 2017 by automakers around the globe?

Of course, although global sales were at 96.8 million in 2017, not that many vehicles were produced. That figure stands at 73.4 million which, I am sure you would agree, is impressive nonetheless.

Which country produced the most cars in 2017?

Yes, the highest number of vehicles were produced by the Chinese auto industry. They beat out Japan and Germany into second and third place. The United States only features in fifth position on the list.

How many cars did the country making the most cars in 2017 actually produce?

Yes, China produced a staggering 24.81 million cars in 2017. That's more than a quarter of all the cars produced worldwide that year. Unbelievable!

Cars are big money. Which auto manufacturer made the most revenue worldwide in 2017?

Yes, Toyota just beat out Volkswagen as the auto manufacturer that made the most revenue in 2017.

How much money did the leading auto manufacturer make in 2017 in terms of revenue?

$265 billion! Those are simply incredible numbers!

According to statista.com, what is the most valuable car brand in 2018?

Having made the most revenue in 2017, Toyota is also the most valuable car brand in the world currently.

Which two brands followed Toyota in second and third place as leading car brand in the world in 2018?

I suppose one would expect to see these two luxury car makers feature fairly high up the list.

In 2017, which of these models sold the most units in the U.S.?

Once again, it's Toyota that dominates. The Toyota Camry was the passenger vehicle with the most sales in the United States in 2017.

As the leading brand in terms of sales, how many units do you think the previous answer actually sold?

Yes, the Toyota Camry sold a staggering 387,081 units in 2017.

How many hours does it take to build a modern car?

Automation has cut down the hours it takes to make a car in today's modern world. In most circumstances, it takes just 25 hours.

Of the amount of hours it takes to make a vehicle, how long do you think is spent on the paint job?

Yes nearly a third of the time it takes to make a modern car is spent on giving it the perfect paint job.

Which built-in feature do all cars now automatically come with?

Yes, since 2012, all vehicles come standard with electronic stability control. This system comes into play to keep your car stable when driving in icy weather, for instance.

How many cars are in use around the globe would you say?

One car for every almost every eight people on the planet. That's a lot of pollution though, sadly.

Which auto brand is credited with inventing the three-point seat belt?

Statistics suggest that a seatbelt saves a life somewhere around the word every six minutes. Thanks to Volvo, the patent for the seatbelt was shared with other automakers.

In America, traffic jams are a serious problem. How long does the average American motorist spend stuck in traffic each year?

All things considered, that's not too bad actually. In other developed countries, this number is far higher thanks to a poorer road infrastructure.

Perhaps the most famous name in the auto industry is that of Henry Ford. Do you know what he did before he built cars?

Henry Ford was an exceptional man. Before he went into the car business, Ford would repair watches often using tools that he made himself. Brilliant!

Did Chevrolet once almost buy out Ford?

Yes, they did. In the early years of both companies in fact. In 1909, Henry Ford agreed to sell his company to William Durant, the man behind Chevrolet. The asking price was $2 million. When Durant went to his bankers in New York, they would not loan him the money and the deal fell through.

The Model T from Ford was one of the world's greatest cars. In 1916, what percent of the cars on the roads of the United States were Model T's?

That's a staggering number, if you think about it. Ford Model T's dominated for much of the 19 years they were on the road.

How many Ford Model T's were actually built during the car's production run, a 19-year period?

That's really impressive for a vehicle so early in the life of the automobile! Having said that, Ford made it easy to make and that certainly helped churn it out.

That's a lot of Model T's produced for sure, but it is not the most produced car ever. What make and model would that be?

First introduced in 1966 and still going strong, over 44 million units of the Toyota Corolla have been produced.

Would you hazard a guess as to how many parts the average car has more or less?

Wow, that's a lot of parts. I suppose it stands to reason, though, cars are complicated things.

In today's modern world, the environment has become very important, even for the car industry. So what percentage of the car parts mentioned above is recyclable?

That's unbelievable isn't it? But it's true! What a great thing for our environment!

The British manufacturer Rolls Royce is known for their sturdy, luxurious vehicles. They have been making cars since the early 1900s. What percentage of their cars do you think still actually are on the road?

They don't make them like that anymore, do they! That is simply staggering!

Cars are big business. For criminals, too! How often is a vehicle stolen in the United State?

Yes, every 45 seconds a car is stolen in the United States. And if you own a Honda Accord, be careful. It is the favorite target for grand theft auto.

Highway congestion in the United States costs how much per year?

That's a huge amount of wasted money. The amount factors in things such as wear and tear on vehicles, lost productivity and gas used idling.

What are the odds of dying in a vehicle accident in the United States?

There are several different versions of this statistic. This one comes from the National Safety Council.

Some modern cars are so quiet, fake engine noises are played through the speakers. Is this true or false?

Yes, it is true! An example is the BMW M5. Incredible to think that a beast of an engine like that could be so quiet.

Which of the following car brands IS NOT owned by the Volkswagen group?

Volkswagen owns a number of car brands, mostly from Europe. They have acquired these over the years to make them the second biggest selling car brand in world in 2017.

Which of the following brands IS owned by the Volkswagen group?

Yes, Italian sportscar manufacturer Lamborghini, maker of some of the maddest super cars in the world, is owned by Volkswagen. They purchased a controlling stake in 1998.

Henry Ford's earliest cars had engines from another American manufacturer. Do you know who?

Dodge supplied engines at the rate of 400 per month to Ford in 1905. They also supplied transmission systems.

How many people die in auto accidents around the world each year?

That's a lot of people. It equates to over 3,000 per day.

What percentage of drivers in the world drive on the right side of the road?

Yes, a fair bit more than half of the world's population drive on the right side of the road.

What percentage of cars on the road in the United States use an automatic transmission?

Yes, Americans sure do love their automatic transmission. In Europe, it's the opposite, with 80% of cars on the road using manual gearboxes.

In 2013, the world's favorite car color was ______

Yes, white cars have always been popular. Why? Well figures show they are less likely to be involved in accidents as they are fairly visible and they are stolen less than other color cars.

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