The front-end module is a structural part of the vehicle made of metal. The front-end module provides structural stability to the vehicle and acts as a mounting structure for various components such as bumper, fender, headlight, condenser, and radiator provides structural stability. The front-end module market is projected to expand owing to the increase in vehicle production. The front-end modules also acts as crash structure during collision and the structure is integrated with crash ends to absorb and collapse during a collision in order to prevent the energy from transmitting into the passenger compartment.
The recent trend of preference for lightweight vehicles has prompted the automotive industry to develop plastic front-end modules. The usage of plastic considerably reduces the weight, thus reducing the weight of the vehicle, improves vehicle performance, and saves fuel. The development of plastic front-end modules is a challenging task, as it has to also absorb the vibrations of the radiator and condenser unit. The 2013 VW Golf uses a plastic front-end module and has crash sensors attached to the structure for deploying the airbags.
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A hybrid structure of metal and plastic is employed in order to attain structural safety with weight reduction. Increase in demand for monocoque structure vehicles is driving the front-end module market. Rise in the adoption of monocoque structure in commercial vehicles is likely to fuel the demand for front-end modules. The accidental damage of front-end module needs replacement as it is a crash structure and thus, has a strong aftermarket presence. Automakers such as Skoda and Hyundai have adopted plastic front-end modules and the trend is estimated to grow across other auto manufacturers as well.
Plastic front-end modules have recorded several hood latch failures in harsh driving conditions; however, testing and development in order to optimize loading and stiffness are likely to overcome the defect.
The global front-end module can be segmented based on material, component, vehicle, sales channel and geography. Based on material, the market can be classified into three materials namely aluminum, plastic & other. The aluminum hold a major share of the market. The plastic front-end module segment is estimated to expand during the forecast period owing to the growing trend of using plastic technology in vehicles.
By component, the front end module is segmented into seven components namely, radiator, condenser, bumper, and others.
In terms of vehicle, the front-end module market can be segregated into passenger vehicle and commercial vehicle. The passenger vehicle segment accounts for a prominent share of the front-end module market. Increasing installation of monocoque structures in light commercial vehicles is expected to boost the front-end module market. Front-end modules have also being used in a few commercial vehicles with over the body structure, such trends in commercial vehicles are likely to further propel the front-end module market.
By sales channel, the front-end module is segmented into OEM and aftermarket, the OEM has a higher market share in the global front –end module market, as the plastic front-end modules cannot be repaired the aftermarket segment is also expected to grow.
Based on geography, the front-end module market can be segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. Europe and Asia Pacific are major markets for front-end modules considering the increased rate of passenger vehicle production in these regions. North America holds a higher share in the total global commercial vehicle production and the increase in adoption of front-end modules is projected to boost the market in North America.
Prominent players operating in the global front-end module market include MAHLE GmbH, Compagnie Plastic Omnium SA, Magna International Inc., DENSO Thermal Systems S.p.A., Valeo, HBPO Group, Hyundai Mobis, Calsonic Kansei Corporation, SL Corporation. Magna, and Plastic Ominium.