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Automotive Engineers

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.

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    Work Activities

    Work Activities

    • Conduct or direct system-level automotive testing.
    • Conduct automotive design reviews.
    • Develop engineering specifications or cost estimates for automotive design concepts.
    • Provide technical direction to other engineers or engineering support personnel.
    • Perform failure, variation, or root cause analyses.
    • Establish production or quality control standards.
    • Write, review, or maintain engineering documentation.
    • Prepare or present technical or project status reports.
    • Design vehicles that use lighter materials, such as aluminum, magnesium alloy, or plastic, to improve fuel efficiency.
    • Alter or modify designs to obtain specified functional or operational performance.
    • Coordinate production activities with other functional units, such as procurement, maintenance, or quality control.
    • Design or analyze automobile systems in areas such as aerodynamics, alternate fuels, ergonomics, hybrid power, brakes, transmissions, steering, calibration, safety, or diagnostics.
    • Conduct research studies to develop new concepts in the field of automotive engineering.
    • Research or implement green automotive technologies involving alternative fuels, electric or hybrid cars, or lighter or more fuel-efficient vehicles.
    • Create design alternatives for vehicle components, such as camless or dual-clutch engines or alternative air-conditioning systems, to increase fuel efficiency.
    • Develop calibration methodologies, test methodologies, or tools.
    • Read current literature, attend meetings or conferences, or talk with colleagues to stay abreast of new automotive technology or competitive products.
    • Calibrate vehicle systems, including control algorithms or other software systems.
    • Design control systems or algorithms for purposes such as automotive energy management, emissions management, or increased operational safety or performance.
    • Develop or implement operating methods or procedures.
    • Develop or integrate control feature requirements.
    • Develop specifications for vehicles powered by alternative fuels or alternative power methods.
    • Build models for algorithm or control feature verification testing.
    • Design vehicles for increased recyclability or use of natural, renewable, or recycled materials in vehicle construction.
    • Research computerized automotive applications, such as telemetrics, intelligent transportation systems, artificial intelligence, or automatic control.


    • Complex Problem Solving

      Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

    • Critical Thinking

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

    • Judgment and Decision Making

      Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.


    Applied Math
    Workplace Documents
    Graphic Literacy


    • Deductive Reasoning

      The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

    • Inductive Reasoning

      The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

    • Oral Comprehension

      The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.


    • Engineering and Technology

      Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.

    • Design

      Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

    • Mathematics

      Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

    Career Video

    Additional videos and more information available on CareerOneStop


    • Ohio Annual Salary 81290/yr
    • Typical Salary
    • Ohio Hourly Wage 39.08/hr
    • Typical Hourly Wage

    Ohio Employment Trends

    • Currently Employed 15,810
    • Yearly Projected Openings 1,170

    Typical Education


    Realistic: People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.They do well at jobs that need:
    • Attention to Detail
    • Analytical Thinking
    • Integrity
    • Dependability
    • Adaptability/Flexibility
    • Cooperation


    • Milling machines
    • Dynamometers
    • Drill press or radial drill
    • Chemical absorption gas analyzers
    • Anechoic chambers


    • Object or component oriented development software
    • Graphics or photo imaging software
    • Development environment software
    • Computer aided design CAD software
    • Analytical or scientific software
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