In the last years the automotive industry has faced a challenging period, with two crises happening at the same time: the COVID-19 pandemic with global impact and deep influence in the markets (including the car sector) and a chip shortage, essential components for car manufacturing. This took the sector into a global chip shortage which after three years seems to start to be left behind.
At the initiative Autoparts from Spain, we go in deep on what the main reasons of this global crisis have been and how it has affected the automotive components market.
The global crisis of components is the result of a series of interconnected factors which brought the perfect storm for a shortage of key materials used in car component manufacturing. Among those factors are:
The COVID-19 pandemic caused serious disruptions in the global supply chain. Travel restrictions, factory closings and shortage of workers affected material production and transport which resulted in meaningful delays.
The automotive industry ability to to build state-of-the-art vehicles depends a great deal on chips. The chip shortage, worsened by the increase in demand for electronic products, severely impacted the car production.
Regardless to the difficulties, the car demand kept going up in many places in the world. This demand increase played an additional role to press up the supply chain, since factories struggled to keep up.
Global chip shortage had a meaningful impact in the automotive market. Car manufacturers have been forced to take their production down or even halt it entirely in some cases. This led to decreasing car availability in the market and higher prices.
Also, several companies in the sector were affected by higher production costs because of the shortage of components and materials. This led to lower margins and therefore, a stronger pressure on the companies’ profitability.
The role of the automotive component suppliers has proven to be crucial to face this crisis. Among the actions taken to face this situation are the following:
Searching for alternative sources of supply of materials and components has been essential to decrease single-source dependence and ensure a constant flow of supplies
Research and development of alternative and sustainable materials helped to overcome the shortage of raw materials and decrease dependency on critical resources.
Working closely with automotive manufacturers to understand their specific needs and make a flexible production and delivery have been key to face their challenges.
Automation and investment in technology increase efficiency and shorten production times. For decades, the Spanish industry of automotive components and equipment has been a world leader because of its innovation, technology, experience and quality
The Spanish sector of automotive components has always supported research, development and innovation, being conscious of the sector’s dynamism and the need of bringing up new products which meet the car manufacturers’ needs. In fact, the Spanish industry of automotive suppliers is one of the leading sectors in R+D at local and European level. This trend remained the same even during the worst moments of the crisis. According to Sernauto -the Spanish association of automotive suppliers- in 2022, the sector increased almost a 12% its investment in productive capacities, investing a total of €1,520 million in order to stay as a competitive, innovative and adapted industry able to meet its clients’ needs. Besides, suppliers’ R+D investment increased 5.8% percent reaching €1,231,5 million which is 3.3% of the total billing, three times the industry’s average.
If you want to learn more about the Spanish sector of automotive components, you can check its history out here.
Discover how Automechanika Shanghai 2023 is an opportunity for Spanish automotive suppliers to participate in the Chinese automotive sector
Find out more about the importance of the braking system in a car, how it works and why it is essential for your safety. Also, get to know the main Spanish suppliers of braking systems that are part of Autoparts from Spain.
Discover the outlook for exports of automotive equipment and components in Spain during the second quarter of 2023. With a growth of +7.6% year-on-year and the European Union as a protagonist.