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What Does it Take to Be an Automotive Engineer?

Automotive Engineer Job Description Develop new or improved designs for vehicle structural members, engines, transmissions, or other vehicle systems, using computer-assisted design technology. Direct building, modification, or testing of vehicle or components.

Automotive Engineer Responsibilities

  • Create design alternatives for vehicle components, such as camless or dual-clutch engines or alternative air-conditioning systems, to increase fuel efficiency.
  • Design vehicles for increased recyclability or use of natural, renewable, or recycled materials in vehicle construction.
  • Develop or integrate control feature requirements.
  • Develop calibration methodologies, test methodologies, or tools.
  • Develop engineering specifications or cost estimates for automotive design concepts.
  • Design or analyze automobile systems in areas such as aerodynamics, alternate fuels, ergonomics, hybrid power, brakes, transmissions, steering, calibration, safety, or diagnostics.

Automotive Engineer Skills

Below is a list of the skills most Automotive Engineers say are important on the job.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

  • Director, Product Safety
  • Systems Engineer
  • Senior Engineering Team Leader
  • Development System Efficiency Manager
  • Technical Specialist

Is There Job Demand for Automotive Engineers?

There were about 288,800 jobs for Mechanical Engineers in 2016 (in the United States).

New jobs are being produced at a rate of 8.8% which is lower than average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 25,300 new jobs for Automotive Engineers by 2026. The BLS estimates 21,200 yearly job openings in this field per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Automotive Engineers in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Mechanical Engineers are Michigan, Texas, and California.

Watch out if you plan on working in Alaska, West Virginia, or Vermont. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Automotive Engineer Salary

The average yearly salary of an Automotive Engineer ranges between $56,270 and $136,550. The median salary is $87,370.

Salary Ranges for Automotive Engineers

How much do Mechanical Engineers make in different U.S. states?

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

Alaska

$128,690

District of Columbia

$112,780

New Mexico

$110,210

Maryland

$109,960

California

$107,370

Delaware

$106,220

Texas

$105,570

Colorado

$104,220

Louisiana

$101,810

Virginia

$100,540

Arizona

$98,390

Massachusetts

$98,190

New Hampshire

$97,270

Washington

$96,860

New Jersey

$95,680

Vermont

$94,580

Rhode Island

$94,520

Connecticut

$94,270

South Carolina

$93,730

Maine

$93,310

Illinois

$92,030

New York

$91,820

Michigan

$91,100

Alabama

$90,030

Nevada

$88,950

Oklahoma

$88,190

Utah

$88,150

Tennessee

$87,990

Florida

$87,770

North Carolina

$87,470

Minnesota

$87,030

Idaho

$86,010

Oregon

$85,890

Pennsylvania

$85,740

Mississippi

$85,570

Missouri

$85,450

Georgia

$84,870

Kentucky

$84,380

Wyoming

$84,200

West Virginia

$84,070

Indiana

$82,510

Kansas

$82,210

Hawaii

$81,730

Ohio

$81,020

Nebraska

$80,650

Iowa

$80,530

Wisconsin

$79,360

Montana

$77,140

South Dakota

$76,220

North Dakota

$75,770

Arkansas

$71,730

What Tools & Technology do Automotive Engineers Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Automotive Engineers may use on a daily basis:

  • Oracle Java
  • Think3 ThinkDesign Engineering
  • UNIX
  • C++
  • Autodesk AutoCAD Mechanical
  • Python
  • Extensible markup language XML
  • Practical extraction and reporting language PERL
  • Computer aided design CAD software
  • IronCAD

Where do Automotive Engineers Work?

Automotive Engineer Sectors

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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