According to its Global Powertrain Outlook, 2020 report, market analysis specialists Frost & Sullivan expects global automotive sales to decline by more than 14.2% due to Covid-19 by the end of 2020 as manufacturing facilities and supply chains are affected by worldwide lockdowns.
However, it finds this slowdown is not expected to have an impact on consumer purchase trends. Demand for diesel engines is expected to decline in Europe by 30% by the end of 2020 as the Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicles Test Procedure (WLPT) commences, while global electric vehicle (EV) sales are forecast to increase by about 3.4%, spurring demand for gasoline-hybrid and fully electric powertrains.
“OEMs will focus on hybridizing existing internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles as full hybrids have proven to help comply with stricter regulations and have also enjoyed consumer success in recent times,” said Naga Karthik Voruganti, research analyst, automotive and transportation, Frost & Sullivan.
“Engine downsizing will continue, while the highly efficient gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines will continue seeing an increase in adoption. The integration of gasoline particulate filters (GPFs) and three-way catalytic converters (3WCs) is expected to increase substantially in 2020 with more OEMs seeking to get their gasoline-powered vehicles certified under the new WLTP regulations.”
He added that mild-hybrid powertrains and the standardization of exhaust aftertreatment technologies, such as selective catalytic reduction (SCR) and coated GPF, are major technology trends that could affect the powertrain industry in 2020.
Highlighted trends in the report include an increase in electric and hybrid sales in the USA of around 4.7%, while in Europe, growth in the EV market looks set to be around 27%. In China, overall vehicle sales will decline, but of those sold, EVs will make up a higher percentage, rising from 4.9% to 5.6%.