Stampers expect European automakers to subcontract twice as many stampings and welded subassemblies by 2015. The move will be made to cut costs and handle a growing number of low-volume models.
The rising number of model variants and low-volume specialty derivatives will push European automakers to increase their use of outside stampers, says Heinz Schmitz, managing director of Stadco in England.
He estimates that stampers handle 4 billion euros to 5 billion euros ($4.82 billion to $6.03 billion at current rates) a year in outsourced work. He expects 50 percent growth in the next seven years.
Gyula Meleghy, Tower Automotive Inc. senior vice president for Europe and South America, estimates the European market is $7.24 billion to $8.45 billion. He predicts it will double by 2015 because of the cost advantages of outsourcing and opportunities as vehicle assembly moves farther into eastern Europe. He estimates that about one-third of all body-in-white stampings and subassemblies are subcontracted.