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With the environmental challenge at the forefront, the automotive industry is constantly searching for alternatives that are greener and more sustainable for the vehicles of the future. Hybrid cars and electric cars are already a reality, but as it was highlighted at 5th Sernauto Meeting, held a few weeks ago in Madrid, "in 2040 most cars will still be combustion". Then how will the future of the automotive sector be?
During the meeting several participants stressed that there are many changes that awaits the automotive sector as we face major environmental, energy, economic and social challenges, but they stated that innovations in internal combustion engines will be the ones that really will bring us closer to the CO2 emission targets set by the European Union.
As responsible for more than 75% of the vehicle, component suppliers in Spain are already providing technological solutions for the new mobility, a mobility that will be more sustainable, safe, connected and automated.
In this situation, technological differentiation is the key. The Spanish suppliers of automotive components are very aware, hence their high investment in R&D&i and their strong involvement in the development of the connected and electrified vehicle, and of Industry 4.0, Artificial Intelligence, safety or lightening, among many other technological solutions.
Companies such as Gestamp, Grupo Antolin or FAE, both members of our platform, Autoparts from Spain, have already begun to look for alternatives through components for hybrid and electric cars.
Grupo Antolin is one of the largest players in the car interiors market internationally, reason why conceives innovation and researching as a key pointn of the business. Nowadays, this companie is developing more than 100 projects which will help to reinforce its leadership in this sector. Moreover, Grupo Antolin is a company committed with the environment and with serching a more ecological mobility, as they produce technologically sustainable products.
The company will supply components for the electric vehicle which will be produced by Ford in Mexico. Because of these, its expansion plan includes the establishment of a new production plant in Cuautitlan, Mexico. But not only that, but the company will also supply components for Volkswagen's electric vehicles, as well as it will enter in the Chinese hybrid and electric car market.
But Grupo Antolin is not the only company involved in facing the new challenges showed by the mobility of the future. Gestamp, company present in more than 20 countries, already produces lighter metal components, ideal for electric cars. Is is due to the fact that electric vehicles use to be more heavy than conventional cars, subject that reduces its efficiency. Because of this, Gestamp has developed nwe technologies that reduce this gap and allow less emissions.
FAE, company especialized in designing and manufacturing electric and electronical automotive components, is also working in the development of technological solutions for the new mobility. One of its contributions are flexible heating systems, compatible with over-injection and thermoforming processes, which present a robust design to the hot spots and the breaks in surface being in addition resistant to splashes. The working temperatures of these systems oscillate between 45 and 65ºC according to demand and have a consumption of 700 W/m2 working at 65ºC.
Products and processes at the service of more efficient and sustainable mobility. This is precisely the 'leitmotiv' of the automotive suppliers present in Spain and in Autoparts from Spain platform, a symbol of innovation and technology.
The Spanish industry of automotive components is continuously looking for adapting to standars demanded by technology and automotive digitalization. In fact, up to 16 million vehicles on European roads -according to Berg Insigh- will have built-in Internet connection, therefore we can call them “smart phones on wheels”.
A concept car is a vehicle prototype, that is, an experimental automobile from which just one example is manufactured so the manufacturer previews what might be done in the future.
In 2021, the Spanish automotive supplier sector exported €19,669 million, which means a 10% increase compared to 2020..Regarding 2019, a -5.2% decrease is observed.