Automotive - Bekaert Annual Report 2010




  • Tire cord
  • Bead wire
  • Suspension spring wire
  • Clutch spring wire
  • Wires for windscreen wiper arms and blades
  • Wires and cables for window systems
  • Wires and fibers for car seats
  • Window film
  • Medium for the filtration of diesel soot particles
  • Heating cord
  • Steel cord reinforced GMT for bumper beams  
  • Attachment spring wire for hub caps
  • Wire for door locks
  • Wheel weights
  • etc.

 Green Application

Around 33% of Bekaert’s sales are generated in the automotive sector, making it our largest buyer. With often invisible steel cord and wire products, Bekaert is present in nearly all automobile components: under the hood, in the steering mechanism and power system, in the doors and windows, the wheel housing and bumper, and in the interior.

Our steel cord business constitutes the lion’s share of sales in this sector. We supply to almost all of the world’s truck & bus and passenger car tire manufacturers, generating sales of 60% and 40% in these segments respectively. Approximately 75% is supplied to the replacement market, which is generally less subject to cyclic fluctuations than the OEM market.

The new steel cord-reinforced Glass Mat Reinforced Thermoplastic strips used in bumper beams combine the advantages of composites and those of metal solutions.

The automotive sector is evolving at an extremely high pace from national markets and national manufacturing to global manufacturing for increasingly global markets. All major OEM and car manufacturers are present in every region in the world, in mature and in emerging markets. In the latter, the passenger car has become a fast-growing consumer good. The same quality brand of materials and products around the world is key for many OEMs. Bekaert’s global presence and quality standards support these needs. Our worldwide technological leadership in metal transformation provides us with quality solutions for the hundreds of different applications on various continents.

Consumer preferences are changing rapidly: the global demand for small and basic cars is rising. Increasingly stringent emission regulations are challenging the automotive sector too. GDP growth, cost reduction, safety, comfort and environmental constraints are the main drivers of the automotive industry. Bekaert's comprehensive innovation strategy provides us with all the tools to successfully exploit the many opportunities that arise.

Helping tire manufacturers in meeting new regulatory requirements

According to the European new tire regulatory framework for 2012-2020, tires for cars, vans and trucks produced after July 2012 will have to be classified and labeled for wet grip, rolling resistance and noise performance. The objectives of this new tire labeling system are twofold: make products’ performance more transparent and reduce the CO2 bill through lower rolling resistance. Other regions will issue similar legislation in order to promote high-quality tires.

This new regulation poses real technological challenges for tire makers. Bekaert helps its customers meet these challenges by offering a dedicated solution that contributes to weight and rolling resistance reduction.

Our product offerings for car applications are not limited to tire cord. Bekaert also produces a wide range of other products such as wires for windscreen wipers, window elevator rope, suspension springs and many more.

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