The global automotive industry has always been fascinated by the latest trends, but this focus on novelty may have led it to ignore - to its great peril - more fundamental realities. This paper, written by Glenn Mercer (NA) and Andreas Zielke (EU), McKinsey & Company, is exclusive to just-auto and highlights what they see as 'four truths' about the auto industry. It will be published in two parts (part two next week). Part one - reproduced here - examines the first two of their four truths: 'the false promise of global convergence' and 'we must value the invaluable'.