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Executive Analysis of 3-D Printing in the Automotive Industry

  • Executive Summary
    • Executive Summary-Key Findings
    • Executive Summary-Adoption of 3-D Printing in the Auto Industry
    • Executive Summary-Global Economic Incentives
    • Executive Summary-3-D Printing Market Potential
    • Executive Summary-Disruption of Manufacturing Business Models
    • Executive Summary-Select 3-D Printing Technologies
    • Executive Summary-Centralized 3-D Printing Supply Chain
    • Executive Summary-Economic Impact of 3-D Printing on Production
    • Executive Summary-Barriers to Entry for 3-D Printing in the Industry
    • Executive Summary-Benefits Achieved in Automotive Prototyping
    • Executive Summary-Automotive 3-D Printing Ecosystem
    • Executive Summary-Key Findings and Future Outlook
  • Research Scope, Objectives, Background, and Methodology
    • Research Scope and Objectives
    • Research Aim and Objectives
    • Key Questions this Study will Answer
    • Research Background and Methodology
    • Key Companies Compared in this Study
    • Associated Multimedia
  • Overview of 3-D Printing Technology
    • Overview-Fundamentals and Attributes of 3-D Printing
    • Overview-Impact of 3-D Printing on the Automotive Value Chain
    • Overview-3-D Printing Technology Attributes
  • 3-D Printing Applications in the Automotive Industry
    • Key Takeaways-Industry Applications
    • 3-D Printing Business Value Proposition
    • Timeline and Activities of 3-D Printing at Ford
    • Local Motors Strati: A Complete 3-D Printed Car
    • Divergent Microfactories Nodal Technology
    • 3-D Printing at Other Global OEMs
    • 3-D Printing at Automotive Suppliers
  • Analysis of 3-D Printing in the Automotive Supply Chain
    • Key Takeaways-Supply Chain Analysis
    • Effects of Centralized 3-D Printing on Automotive Supply Chain
    • Logistical Analysis of Centralized 3-D Printing
      • Table Automotive 3-D Printing: Logistical Analysis of Centralized 3-D Printing, US, 2014-2030
    • Economic Impacts of 3-D Printing on the Automotive Supply Chain
  • 3-D Printing Ecosystem in the Automotive Industry
    • Automotive 3-D Printing Ecosystem
  • Analysis of 3-D Printing In Automotive Production
    • Key Takeaways-3-D Printing Production
    • Economic Impact of 3-D Printing on Automotive Production
    • Theoretical Production Analysis of Brake Disc Rotors
      • Table Automotive 3-D Printing: Conventional Brake Disc Rotor Manufacturing, Global, 2014
      • Table Automotive 3-D Printing: 3-D Brake Disc Rotor Production Comparison, Global, 2014 and 2030
  • Future Insights into 3-D Printing in the Automotive Industry
    • Key Takeaways-Future Insights
    • Expected Trends in 3-D Printing in the Automotive Industry
    • Disruption of Conventional Manufacturing Business Models
    • Impact of Microfactories on the Aftermarket Industry
    • 3-D Printing Innovators and Disruptors
  • Key Challenges
    • Key Challenges Facing the Automotive Industry
    • Legal Issues
  • Key Conclusions and Future Outlook
    • Key Conclusions
    • Key Findings and Future Outlook
    • The Last Word-3 Big Predictions
  • Appendix
    • Market Engineering Methodology

Executive Analysis of 3-D Printing in the Automotive Industry

Executive Summary—Key Findings

3-D printing’s impact on the automotive industry primarily has been in research and development (R&D), but OEMs are turning the corner into commercially printed parts for mainstream production.

Automotive 3-D Printing: Key Findings, Global, 2014–2030

In 2014, 􂀀% of 3-D printing applications in the automotive industry were for prototyping and 􂀀% for production, enabling OEMs and suppliers to:

Create proof of concepts with localized manufacturing

Fabricate complex and unique production tools such as jigs, fixtures, and moulds

Prototype parts, such as Ford’s 4-cylinder EcoBoost engine and F-150 exhaust manifold

By 2025, new US OEMs such as Local Motors are expected to increase adoption of microfactory business models to:

Print parts at authorized representative locations, reducing supply chain complexities and cost

Expand crowdsourcing and collaborative design to capitalize on a diverse talent pool

Enable convenient and quick vehicle servicing to maximize customer satisfaction

Expansion of 3-D printing in the value chain is expected to face multiple challenges, such as:

The high cost of 3-D printing machinery and materials

Conventional component manufacturers lobbying governments against 3-D printing

Customer patent infringement implications for OEMs and suppliers

A shift from 3-D prototyping to production is expected by 2030 due to:

An expected 􂀀% reduction in raw material prices for 3-D printing

Price similarity: A conventionally manufactured part now is 􂀀% cheaper than one that is 3-D printed; the gap is expected to shrink to as low as 􂀀%

About this report

This research service analyzes the potential impact of 3-D printing on the global automotive industry. It provides insight into the fundamentals of 3-D printing technologies, as well as their current usage and future applications. While automotive original equipment manufacturers and suppliers are using this technology on a limited scale, 3-D printing is expected to have a greater effect on the supply chain and extend into automotive production. Potential disruptions to conventional production business models are analyzed, as are the challenges that 3-D printing could face. The study’s base year is 2014; the forecast period is from 2015 to 2030.


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