LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Technavio’s latest market research report on the global automotive carbon composite driveshaft market provides an analysis of the most important trends expected to impact the market outlook from 2017-2021. Technavio defines an emerging trend as a factor that has the potential to significantly impact the market and contribute to its growth or decline.
The improving socio-economic conditions worldwide are driving the demand for mid-segment, luxury, and sports cars. With growing dispensable income, consumers are willing to spend more on the purchase of vehicles, which is evident in the growing market for high-performance sports cars.
“The global automotive carbon composite driveshaft market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12% during the forecast period, owing to the increasing demand for these driveshafts in high-performance cars, which will force the manufacturers to offer this as a factory fitment,” says Amey Vikram, a lead analyst at Technavio for automotive components research.
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The top three emerging market trends driving the global automotive carbon composite driveshaft market according to Technavio research analysts are:
- Growing use of carbon fiber driveshafts in SUV segment
- Use of nanotechnology in driveshafts for better performance
- Use of advanced production and manufacturing technologies for carbon fiber composites
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Growing use of carbon fiber driveshafts in SUV segment
Carbon fiber driveshafts are currently used only in sports cars/racing cars, hypercars, and very few high-performance cars. Despite having many advantages, the manufacturing complexities and cost factors involved in the use of carbon composite driveshafts in vehicles have been hindering the expansion of the market to the mass segment.
However, the acceptance of carbon fiber driveshafts in performance vehicles like premium sedans and SUVs in the aftermarket segment has led automobile manufacturers to expand their market to the SUV segment. Alfa Romeo's Stelvio was the first model to adopt carbon fiber driveshaft in this segment. This model competes with cars like the BMW 3 series, which is a luxury sedan. The use of carbon fiber driveshafts in this segment could lead vendors of SUVs and other mass segment vehicles to adopt the use of carbon fiber driveshafts over the coming years.
Use of nanotechnology in driveshafts for better performance
The use of nanotechnology in carbon fiber driveshafts will improve the performance of the vehicle as the shaft's longitudinal and hoop stiffness will increase for a specific winding pattern. QA1, along with 3M's aerospace and commercial transportation division, has developed 3M's 4831 epoxy. It contains silica nanoparticles to increase the shaft's longitudinal and hoop stiffness for a fixed winding pattern, fiber type, and fiber content. This can also enable the production of a driveshaft that is more durable and has greater abrasion resistance than driveshafts made with unmodified resins.
“Although this trend of using nanotechnology incurs high expenditure in the form of manufacturing costs, it is expected to have a positive impact on the carbon composite driveshaft market as it ensures high performance without any compromise,” says Amey.
Use of advanced production and manufacturing technologies for carbon fiber composites
The global automotive driveshaft market is seeing the adoption of high strength materials that not only add to the overall performance quotient of the vehicle but also aid in weight reduction. Automotive carbon fiber driveshaft designers and manufacturers are incorporating advanced production technologies that will reduce the manufacturing and assembling costs while meeting the quality standards and specific configurations as required by the respective automotive applications.
The innovative manufacturing techniques make use of fast cycle manufacturing processes, faster automation processes, and layup automated techniques for labor-intensive activities. To complement these processes, engineers and designers are now making use of advanced composite software tools and utilities to aid in the automation of processes, and thereby enhancing the speed of driveshaft manufacturing. The automotive carbon fiber industry is also making use of innovative cost modeling, and custom design integrated virtual manufacturing systems.
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