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MARKET TRENDS: Motoring Ahead

September 1, 2006
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Automotive coatings, adhesives & sealants demand to exceed $7 billion in 2010

Picture source: Mazda North American Operations


Demand for automotive coatings, adhesives and sealants in the United States is forecast to rise 4.1% per year to over $7 billion in 2010. Growth in OEM demand will be supported by U.S. motor vehicle production, which will rebound from declines posted during the 2000-2005 period. However, these gains will be mostly linked to passenger cars, which consume less coatings, adhesives and sealants on a per vehicle basis than larger vehicles. Aftermarket demand will benefit from gains in the number of vehicles in use, which will rise 1.5% annually through 2010. These and other trends are presented in Automotive Coatings, Adhesives & Sealants, a new study from Cleveland-based industry research firm The Freedonia Group Inc.

In addition to growth in vehicle production and vehicles in use, demand for coatings, adhesives and sealants will benefit from other factors, which will increase usage rates of these materials. For example, although consumer tastes have tended to favor larger, heavier vehicles over the last decade, automotive designers continue to stress weight reduction and improved fuel efficiency, while focusing on safety, aesthetics, and durability. Taken together, these efforts are promoting greater use of structural adhesives - such as epoxies and polyurethanes - at the expense of mechanical fasteners, both to reduce weight and to eliminate potential corrosion problems. Similarly, sealant demand has directly benefited from efforts to make car cabins quieter and better insulated.

Aftermarket demand will continue to benefit from a change in the product mix over the last decade favoring larger light vehicles, particularly sport-utility vehicles (SUVs). Although demand for light trucks and vans (including SUVs) is slowing compared to recent years due to high fuel prices and market saturation, the number of such large light vehicles will continue to increase as a percentage of total light vehicles in use. Because of the relatively recent emergence of light trucks, vans and SUVs, fewer of them are being retired from the light vehicle park relative to conventional automobiles. The resultant shift in composition of the vehicle park will favor the aftermarket for coatings, adhesives and sealants, as larger light vehicles require more materials on a per vehicle basis than conventional automobiles.

For more information, contact Corinne Gangloff, The Freedonia Group Inc., 767 Beta Drive, Cleveland, OH 44143-2326; phone (440) 684-9600; fax (440) 646-0484; e-mail pr@freedoniagroup.com ; or visit http://www.freedoniagroup.com .

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