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Lightweight Strategies of Key Global Automotive OEMs

  • May 2013
  • 102 pages
  • Frost & Sullivan
Report ID: 1356546


Table of Contents

Body in White (BIW) is Expected to Contribute an Average 15% Weight Reduction by 2020

This study provides a strategic analysis of the lightweight strategies of key global automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). The study analyzes current OEM lightweight strategies and presents an outlook for 2020. This study also covers passenger car weight reduction trends in addition to the deployment strategies. Deep-dive analysis has been provided for lightweighting methods by focusing on particular areas and vehicle systems. The study also places emphasis on materials and emerging partnerships in the industry. It covers the role of existing and new materials targeted at lightweighting. The study concludes with a case study as well as strategic conclusions and recommendations.

Key Findings

Body in white (BIW) is expected to contribute to a X% CO2 emission reduction by 2020 as key global original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) target at least Xkg* reduction year on year (YoY).

Automotive Lightweighting: Key Takeaways, Global, 2012
1. By 2015, X out of XOEMs are expected to reduce at least X kg* YoY of their overall fleet weight, in order to achieve target CO2 emission levels. German OEMs like Volkswagen (VW) and BMW are expected to lead with at least aXX% weight reduction YoY using lightweight techniques.
2. A X kg vehicle in 2012 could shed up to X% of its weight by 2020 using lightweight solutions. The cost of compliance could vary from $X– extra for every kg reduced**. OEMs are expected to offset costs by creating luxury packages of highly-effective lightweight solutions.
3. OEMs are expected to adopt at least three modular lightweight packages—Evo, Inno, and Revo—which are defined by the input material content and derived from CO2 reduction goals. These packages are expected to become differentiated, competing vehicles as brands innovate to improve sales.
4. Focus areas such as BIW (Wave-1) followed by powertrain (Wave-2) are expected to contribute a total of about X% andX%, respectively, toward vehicle weight reduction by 2020. A Wave-3 is pursued by suppliers with revolutionary ideas is expected to find application in interiors, battery, and plastic wheels.
5. Within each focus area, materials such as advanced high-strength steel (AHSS), Aluminum (Al), carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP) as well as innovative joining techniques like collar joining and friction stir welding (FSW) are expected to contribute up to nearly half of overall weight reduction by 2020.
6. Finally, platform strategies create a unique opportunity for substitution materials to be applied across a wider variety of vehicle segments, bringing scales of sustainability. For instance, all Al Audi engine used in the Golf for brand synergy is being expanded to Jetta and higher mass market VW models by 2020.

Stringent CO2 Emission Level is the Key to Automotive Lightweighting

En route to achieving a Xg/km CO2 reduction level by 2020, Xout of XOEMs, comprising of mass-market as well as luxury automakers, are expected to reduce at least 100 kg* YoY in overall fleet weight by 2015.

Best Seller Models of OEMs—Weight Trends

All analyzed OEMs in Asia-Pacific built lightweight best sellers in their recent generation, four of which built sub-1,000 kg best sellers in the past and expect to utilize experience to reduce weight in future.

Vehicle Weight Band—Europe

A reduction in weight in the welter weight band to aid the OEMs balances their CO2 emission fleet averages and sets them up to achieve targets by 2015 and beyond.

Vehicle Weight Band—United States

Reduction in vehicle weight in the welter and the cruiser segments will boost the fleet average mpg of CAFÉ.

Key Questions This Study Will Answer

• By 2020, can cost targets and weight-reduction targets be met simultaneously while achieving lightweighting?
• Are there any differences in the fundamental drivers of premium and mass OEMs to achieve lightweighting? Do they tend to vary with markets, segments, models, and brands (within a group)?
• How does body in white, followed by powertrain focus areas, help achieve more than chassis and interiors? Which materials and joining techniques are key today and in the future?
• Can OEMs make cars lightweight (sub-1,000 kg) and fuel efficient while remaining safer on-road?
• The New Golf7-Gen weighs as much as the Golf4-Gen. Can a past-generation model have the answers?
• Why are key global OEMs expected to target lightweight packages? What are expected to the base and intended characteristics of lightweight packages?
• By 2020, can cost targets and weight-reduction targets be met simultaneously while achieving lightweighting?
• Automotive Lightweighting: Key Questions This Study Will Answer, Global, 2012
• Which OEMs are partnered with key global suppliers to achieve lightweighting in the next generation of cars?

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