GLOBAL AUTOMOTIVE FUEL TANK MARKET
Whether gasoline or diesel the highest priority in an automobile must be to keep the fuel far from being ignited and fuel tanks play a crucial role in that. Many leading manufacturers are investing on developing the multi-layered high density polyethylene fuel tanks which results in low permeation to minimize fuel hydrocarbons. These fuel tanks are environmental friendly and meet the government requirements. But, growing demand for battery electric vehicles worldwide will restrain the growth.
- <45 L
- 45-70 L
- >70 L
By Vehicle Type
- Passenger Cars
- Heavy Commercial Vehicles
- Light Commercial Vehicles
- Two Wheelers
The advent of plug-in hybrid vehicles has led to development of pressurized fuel tanks. The implementation of various plastic products such as polyethylene, ethylene vinyl alcohol has eliminated the steel tanks in hybrid vehicles. Manufacturers are implementing latest technology to meet the high standards such as internal venting systems and anti-slosh elements (to reduce the noise inside the tank).
MARKET BY CAPACITY
The most common segment is 45-70 L segment where it is dominated by the passenger cars Sedan, Hatchback, MUVs, Premium and Luxury Vehicles. Europe and China markets are skewed in favour these segments. In US owing to greater number of pick-up trucks which are close to even 120 L in case of AWD trucks, is dominated by 70+ L capacity tanks. India has the highest number of vehicles with sub 45 L tank capacity.
MARKET BY MATERIAL
A shift from metal (steel and aluminium) is witnessed in the recent past. The plastic’s ability to act as insulator to heat and less chance of igniting the fuel and more importantly they result in better fuel mileage due to the amount of overall weight of vehicle being reduced. These factors have made the plastic to be the leader in the segment. Polyethylene tanks are the highest gainers in the market. However, the plastic tanks are concentrated in the 2 wheelers and certain passenger cars. The aluminium and the steel remains the primary option for the trucks and buses. Steel tanks are the ideal option for diesel vehicles to meet the low evaporative emission standards.
MARKET BY VEHICLE TYPE
The passenger cars across the world are dominated by 45-70 L segment. Among these the hatchback, sedans and even SUVs in many countries fall under this category. The commercial vehicles’ range is broadly varied. The light commercial vehicles have an average capacity of 100-120 L. Among heavy commercial vehicles buses attract larger fuel tanks than trucks and in US buses with more than 900L are witnessed.
US AUTOMOTIVE FUEL TANK MARKET
The US is the largest market for pick-up trucks which are also among the top selling light duty vehicles and the average fuel tank capacity of the pick-up trucks in US is 95 litres. The average fuel tank capacity of top selling cars other than pick-up trucks is 55 litres.
US commercial vehicle market is the largest in the world with ~2 Million units sold per annum. The average tank capacity of the heavy duty trucks in US is 350 litres. All these factors collectively have made US the leader in the fuel tank market by value.
EUROPE AUTOMOTIVE FUEL TANK MARKET
The top selling cars have the capacity in the 45-55 range. The rise in EV vehicles sale in Europe in 2019 was close to ~40%, the highest in the world. Out of which ~65% were the BEVs. This will restrain the fuel tank market.
CHINA AUTOMOTIVE FUEL TANK MARKET
Chinese top selling cars all are on average having a capacity of 50L fuel tank. Exception being Haval H6 powerful SUV tank capacity going up to 70L.
China accounts for almost 50 % of EVs in the global market. 81% of overall EVs sold in China last year are BEVs; this will limit the fuel tank growth in the region.
INDIA AUTOMOTIVE FUEL TANK MARKET
In India 5 of the top 10 selling cars in India is having sub 45 litres fuel tank capacity. India accounts for the highest amount of 2 wheelers in the world. The fuel tank is on average 5.5 litres for scooter and 12 litres for motorcycles.
MARKET SIZE AND FORECAST
Manufacturers are adopting fiber patch replacement technique in addition to the existing fiber reinforced plastics. This is expected to significantly increase the lightweight potential.
The introduction of hydrogen fuel cell powered buses in Europe will initiate the demand for hydrogen tanks for the commercial vehicles. The hydrogen fuel under high pressure requires modern technology and modern materials such as carbon fiber, nano materials to contain the hydrogen. This will boost the R&D in the fuel tank sector.
The global Automotive fuel tank market is estimated at $XX Billion in 2020 growing at –%CAGR till 2025
RECENT MARKET TREND
- Plastic Omnium has launched 2 new R&D centres in Belgium and China focussing on fuel systems and emissions.
- Fuel tanks used in the BMW F900 and 900 R motorcycle models are made up of Durethan polyamide and are expected to have lower fuel permeation.
- A German manufacturer has approached Plastic Omnium to develop 350-bar hydrogen tank for the buses in the Europe.
- Plastic Omnium has obtained the certification for hydrogen tank which can store hydrogen at as many as 700 bar.
Europe accounts for the major fuel tank manufacturers such as Plastic Omnium (France), Kautex Textron(Germany), Serbatoi (Italy) and TI Fluid (UK). Some of the other fuel tank manufacturers are Yapp Automotive Systems (China), Fuel Total Systems (Japan), Magna Inc (Canada) and Yachiyo (Japan). India’s largest tank manufacturer is Dali & Samir Engg Pvt Ltd which has a well established presence in commercial vehicles segment.
Although Fuel cell is still an unproven technology in terms of mass scale commercialization, it has been increasingly seen as a practical alternative to costly high capacity BEVs. The obvious benefit being less than 10 minutes refill time. Some of the companies that produce hydrogen fuel tanks are Plastic Omnium and Cevotec (Germany).
- Plastic Omnium
- Magna Inc
- Yapp Automotive Systems
- Fuel Total System
- SMA Serbatoi S.p.A
- TI Fluid Systems
- Unipres Corporation
- Dali & Samir Engineering