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Dudenhoeffer says automakers should have the right strategy for developing markets (Photo: Claus Dick)

HANOVER - Connected cars will be important differentiators for makers of premium cars, but those manufacturers should be wary of potential data security issues, university professor Ferdinand Dudenhoeffer said Thursday.

Dudenhoeffer, who heads the CAR research center at Germany's University Duisburg-Essen, said that, while the auto industry can successfully develop a model for connecting cars, it will have a more difficult time creating zero-emission vehicles. "Driving without emissions is probably the most complex issue for the industry," Dudenhoeffer said in an address to the automotiveIT Congress here.

Dudenhoeffer, one of Germany's best-know auto-industry analysts, stressed that global growth will not come from traditional "triad" markets in Europe, North America and Japan. Instead, he said developing markets will drive the auto industry in coming decades.

Global car sales will grow from 71.2 million units in 2013 to 127.3 million by 2030, but 70 pc of those 2013 sales will come from non-triad countries, Dudenhoeffer predicted. To underline his point he noted that 87 percent of the world population - or 5.940 billion people - live in non-triad countries, where there are only 66 cars per 1,000 people. By comparison, in the triad, where 875 million people live, "car density" is 601 per 1,000 people.

Opportunities abound, Dudenhoeffer said, but the biggest risk automakers face is "to not deal properly with these new countries."