Founded in 1967, Sernauto is the Spanish Association of manufacturers of equipment and components for automotive. Sernauto represents the interests of its partners with the Administration and the public and private institutions. It is also a reference point to discuss the issues affecting the industry and meeting point for companies. José a. Jiménez Saceda sets out its opinion on the current state of the sector.
The automotive industry is in constant technological evolution. Manufacturers of automobiles and components r & d projects are aimed at the development of vehicles more efficient, safer and better connected with its environment. Electric vehicles represent one more than the technological options available in the future and therefore will be for automotive components sector as a source of threats and opportunities. The concept of electrification of the vehicle is not only of the propulsion system, since vehicles are undergoing a continual process of electrification by replacement of mechanical and hydraulic, functions as the address, the brake, etc. by other electrical or electronic. This development is a challenge for all the companies involved that have to adapt to these new technologies in the short term.
With regard to the development of specific of the propulsion system, as well as the planned improvements in engines of internal combustion of conventional vehicles, hybrid vehicles will sue smaller engines and efficient mechanisms of interaction with the electric motor to optimize the management of energy in the vehicle. This also will require the development of both mechanical and thermal energy recovery systems, linked to the brake and exhaust systems.
Sernauto is promoting the dissemination of information on the anticipated technological changes to enable companies in the sector to define their strategic plans and reorient their development projects and their productive capacity to products and technologies for the future, according to their skills and knowledge of product and process.
The electric vehicle will represent the entry into the sector of new actors such as manufacturers of electric motors, batteries and other electronic of power high-performance energy storage devices, thermal management, power management software elementsICT, etc. They all have experience in sectors with different requirements in technological capacity, quality and price, so to facilitate their work with vehicle manufacturers will be convenient interaction with current suppliers in the sector, who know the demands and the level of demand for car manufacturers.
The development of new concepts of urban vehicles, both small cars and vehicles for transport and distribution of goods, will represent the entry of products into niche markets, manufactured by new companies. This fact can result in a change in the relations between the different actors in the chain of value.
According to the figures already published by the Association a few weeks ago, the turnover of the sector in 2009 was 22.988 million euros, representing a decline of 23.3% over 2008. These figures are in line with the decline experienced in the same period by the manufacture of vehicles.
It is true that the figures for production of vehicles in Spain in the first half of 2010 are being better than the same period of 2009, however, the gradual disappearance of the aid for the replacement of vehicles in the different European countriesthey are the natural market of manufactured vehicles in Spain, as well as the planned rise of VAT in July, makes it very difficult to establish some optimistic forecasts for the second half of the year, so the overall figure expected by 2010 is similar to that of the last year.
In today's global market, the survival of automotive industry in Spain must be tied to their technological competitiveness and the supply of products and technologies of greater added value. To do this we need support to the sector from the public authorities, promoting technological projects throughout the value chain, including suppliers of different levels from the vehicle manufacturer. Also need the collaboration of companies with technological centres and universities and research centres, as well as actors in sectors which interact with the vehicle, such as telecommunications, new materials, communications, infrastructure, and energy and electric companies.
First electric car ' Made in Alava '
The first electric car ' Made in Alava ' is already a consolidated project. The 100 million euros that will cost its placing on the market, every day add fair dose of uncertainty to keep the project alive. In September 2011 will be born the first prototype and a year later out into the street. The challenge is to sell 100,000 units until 2014.
The first model was presented in Madrid and talks with the brands that will produce the car are on the verge of crystallizing. Hiriko is no longer just a dream. Its proponents, a group of Alava businessmen consistent with MIT in Massachusetts and the technology park of Álava only speak of ' "true innovation ' and a change of business model based on sustainable development."
The vehicle consists of seven modules which will be manufactured entirely in the Basque country by other so many Basque companies. Hiriko will be available worldwide and is going to ride through a franchise system. These facilities will have a few small assembly lines of five phases that will be assembled the car and one last will monitor and verify the entire process.
Lorenzo Álvarez Oaks, consultor of Financials of the Innovation in Alma Quality consultancy Group
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