Liftgate is generally made of steel by auto OEMs themselves; however, with the advent of lightweight components, composites have been in limelight and have already become successful in making a remarkable presence in liftgate of vehicles. Composites play a vital role in contributing to weight reduction without compromising the strength and performance of the overall system. This is attracting tier players as well as raw material suppliers including resin, fiber, and coating suppliers, to tap the growing opportunity of composites in the automotive liftgate market.
Composite liftgate is among the list of few automotive components that are experiencing staggering growth. Composite liftgate account for less than one-fifth of the overall liftgate market at present but forays huge growth potential in the coming years. Stringent regulations imposed by governments of many countries are putting pressure on the automakers to curb the overall vehicle weight to increase fuel efficiency or reduce carbon emissions. Liftgates could not escape itself from such regulations and experienced a significant change in the selection of materials over the period.
The global composite liftgate market is likely to experience excellent growth over the next five years to reach an estimated value of US$ 1,183.3 million in 2024. Increasing automotive production, increasing share of SUVs in the overall vehicle production, and increasing demand for lightweight liftgate over bulky metallic liftgate are some of the key factors proliferating the growth of the automotive composite liftgate market. Ford Motor Company, Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. , BMW AG, Groupe Renault, Group PSA, and The Volvo Group are some of the major OEMs that have switched towards composite liftgate in some of their mass-selling vehicle models.
Insights based on vehicle type:-
The market is segmented based on the vehicle type as Hatchback, SUV, and Others. Hatchback is likely to remain the most dominant vehicle type segment over the next five years; however, SUV is likely to be the fastest-growing segment during the same period. Renault Clio and Megane; Peugeot 308 and 508; and BMW i3 are some key hatchback models that contain composite liftgate.
Insights based on manufacturing process type:-
The market is segmented based on the manufacturing process type as Injection Molding, and Compression Molding. Injection molding is expected to remain the most dominant manufacturing process over the next five years, whereas compression molding is likely to experience higher growth during the same period. Sheet molding compound (SMC) and long-fiber-reinforced thermoplastic (LFRT) compounds are the major types of composites being processed for fabricating composite liftgate.
Insights based on region:-
Based on regions, Europe is expected to remain the largest automotive composite liftgate market during the forecast period. European OEMs, such as Group PSA, Groupe Renault, and BMW AG, have been early movers in adopting composite liftgate, which led to the dominance of region in the global market.
Asia-Pacific is likely to be the fastest-growing region in the global automotive composite liftgate market, driven by China. Despite weakening economic growth of China, the country is still able to attract investments from automakers. All the major global automakers are rolling out their assembly plants in the country in order to serve both, growing the local demands as well as target export market. This is also imprinting a huge impact on the overall market dynamics of liftgates as well as composite liftgates as the country is gradually becoming the major market for composite liftgates.
The supply chain of this market comprises raw material suppliers, composite compound suppliers, composite liftgate manufacturers, automotive OEMs, and dealers. Major automotive composite liftgate manufacturers are Plastic Omnium Group, Magna International Inc. and Trinseo S. A. Development of lightweight composite liftgates, targeting untapped vehicle models, execution of mergers & acquisitions, and formation of long-term contracts with OEMs are the key strategies adopted by the major players to gain a competitive edge in the market.
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