Lightweight Car Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecast (2022 - 2027)

The Lightweight Car Market is Segmented by Car Type (Passenger Cars and Sports Cars), Material Type (Glass Fiber, Carbon Fiber, High-strength Steel, and Other Material Types), and Geography (North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, South America, and Middle-East and Africa). The report provides market size and forecast in value (USD billion) for all the segments.

Market Snapshot

Lightweight Car Market Size
Study Period: 2018-2027
Base Year: 2021
Fastest Growing Market: Asia-Pacific
Largest Market: Asia-Pacific
CAGR: 5.32 %
Lightweight Car Companies

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Market Overview

The lightweight car market was valued at about USD 70 billion in 2021, and it is expected to reach a value of about USD 76.28 billion by 2027, registering a CAGR of over 4.5% during the forecast period.

The COVID-19 outbreak had a huge impact on the market. With the raw materials and international trade coming to a halt due to stringent lockdowns worldwide, the assembly lines and production units were closed, which considerably impacted the market. However, with the preference for personal and individual mobility, the market is set to stabilize in terms of revenue and market sizes of different vehicles.

Increasing demand for lightweight materials from the automotive industry and a growing focus on fuel economy are expected to be the major growth drivers for the market. However, the high cost of lightweight materials, such as carbon fiber and glass composites, is hindering the market's growth, as their usage in low-cost vehicles may drastically increase the prices of such vehicles.

The automotive sector is one of the largest markets for composite materials. The automotive industry is continuously looking for innovative materials to help reduce vehicle weight and achieve fuel efficiency and carbon emission targets.

Asia-Pacific is expected to witness the fastest growth in the market due to the growing automotive industry in the region (in terms of both production and demand), especially in countries, such as India and China. In India, the automotive industry is expanding rapidly, with the rise in the income level of consumers. In addition, the demand for light vehicles has increased with increasing awareness about fuel efficiency and environmental benefits. Currently, India is the fifth-largest producer of light and commercial vehicles and the second-largest producer of two-wheelers. With the rapid increase in manufacturing capacities in the country, the consumption of carbon fiber composites is expected to increase during the forecast period.

Scope of the Report

The lightweight car market is segmented by car type, material type, and geography.

By car type, the market is segmented into passenger cars and sports cars. By material type, the market is segmented into glass fiber, carbon fiber, high-strength steel, and other material types.

By geography, the market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, South America, and Middle-East and Africa.

The report offers market sizes and forecast for the lightweight car market in value (USD billion) for all the mentioned segmentation.

Car Type
Passenger Cars
Sports Cars
Material Type
Glass Fiber
Carbon Fiber
High-strength Steel
Other Material Types
North America
United States
Rest of North America
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
South Korea
Rest of Asia-Pacific
South America
Rest of South America
Middle-East and Africa
United Arab Emirates
South Africa
Rest of Middle-East and Africa

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Key Market Trends

Increasing Demand for Lightweight Material from the Automotive Industry

As fuel costs and distance traveled are increasing, consumers want better miles per gallon (mpg) and often consider gas mileage as a key factor while purchasing a vehicle. With stringent emissions regulations due to increased exhaust emissions, automobile manufacturers are focusing on manufacturing lightweight vehicles to reduce CO2 emissions. A 10 kg weight reduction is estimated to save 1 gram of CO2 per kilometer. In the United States, the regulations mandate that, by 2025, the average fuel economy standard must meet 54.5 miles per gallon. As per the US Department of Energy (DOE), the vehicle's weight is being reduced by 10%, which may yield a 6-8% rise in fuel economy.

Thus, to facilitate this change, automobile manufacturers are shifting from steel or aluminum to composite materials essential to achieve the cost efficiency of these highly automated production cycles, which reduce vehicle weight. In a typical automobile, the use of fibers is 50% by volume while adding just 10% of the weight.

As a result, the companies have started using materials such as carbon fiber and titanium alloys to make vehicles lightweight and fuel-efficient, especially in luxury and sports models. Automotive manufacturers, such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, McLaren, Chevrolet, and Lamborghini, are some of the OEMs continually increasing the usage of composites in their vehicles as they aid in reducing the weight of the vehicles.

Lightweight Car Market Trends

Europe is Expected to Witness Healthy Growth Rate

With the enactment of stringent emission norms and fuel economy standards in Europe, automobile manufacturers in the region have started using carbon fiber composites for manufacturing their vehicles.

The companies are experimenting with new composites that can reduce the total weight of the vehicle to a great extent. The application of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) has been widely adopted for the production of automotive bodies, particularly in German cars such as BMW and Audi.

For instance, BMW partnered with German carbon fiber producer SGL Group and invested ~USD 1 billion for securing the supply chain for CFRP used in the production of i3 and i8. Apart from BMW, another German automobile manufacturer, Audi, uses CFRP to produce the rear wall of the space frame for its A8 luxury sedan. This part provides ~40% of the vehicle’s overall torsional rigidity, making it a suitable material for usage in the vehicle. The part is ~50% lighter in weight than its metallic predecessor.

The carbon fiber material is a go-to option for most manufacturers. Despite being a lightweight material, it can handle high loads and is a perfect alternative to traditional heavy-weight metals.

Lightweight Car Market Growth

Competitive Landscape

Some of the major players in the lightweight car market are Toyota Motor Corporation, Nissan Motor Co. Ltd, Kia Motors Corporation, Hyundai Motor Co., and Ford Motor Company.

Auto manufacturers majorly dominate the market for lightweight cars. They also have a long-standing partnership with major composite manufacturing companies.

Recent Developments

With the need for sustainability and lower emissions to protect the environment, many OEMs are releasing electric vehicles on their models. The industry is looking to invest and develop electric vehicles with the best combination of performance and a long travel range.

  • In December 2021, Nissan Motor Co. Ltd announced to limit its internal cobustion engine vehicle development. The company is planning to build new battery recycling plants in the United States and Europe. Although it is shifting toward the evolving EVs and hybrid vehicles, by 2030, the company aims to develop 23 electrified vehicles, of which 15 will be fully electric and 15 hybrid or PHEV. With this ambition, Nissan aims to generate 50% sales from EVs and hybrid vehicles.
  • In December 2021, Toyota Motor Corporation announced an investment of USD 35 billion on battery production. The company plans to manufacture 30 EV models by the end of 2030 due to shifting demand landscape and regulations owing to surging environmental concerns. The company aims to generate annual sales of 3.5 million EVs by 2030.
  • In September 2021, General Motors took a step forward in autonoumous mobility. It unveiled a technology called "Ultra Cruise", which enables 95% of hands-free operations. Generral Motors announced that the vehicle would be introduced by late 2022 and made available by early 2023.

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Market Drivers

    2. 4.2 Market Restraints

    3. 4.3 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.3.1 Threat of New Entrants

      2. 4.3.2 Bargaining Power of Buyers/Consumers

      3. 4.3.3 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      4. 4.3.4 Threat of Substitute Products

      5. 4.3.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry


    1. 5.1 Car Type

      1. 5.1.1 Passenger Cars

      2. 5.1.2 Sports Cars

    2. 5.2 Material Type

      1. 5.2.1 Glass Fiber

      2. 5.2.2 Carbon Fiber

      3. 5.2.3 High-strength Steel

      4. 5.2.4 Other Material Types

    3. 5.3 Geography

      1. 5.3.1 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

        3. Rest of North America

      2. 5.3.2 Europe

        1. Germany

        2. United Kingdom

        3. France

        4. Rest of Europe

      3. 5.3.3 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. Japan

        3. India

        4. South Korea

        5. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      4. 5.3.4 South America

        1. Brazil

        2. Rest of South America

      5. 5.3.5 Middle-East and Africa

        1. United Arab Emirates

        2. South Africa

        3. Rest of Middle-East and Africa


    1. 6.1 Vendor Market Share

    2. 6.2 Company Profiles*

      1. 6.2.1 Toyota Motor Corporation

      2. 6.2.2 Volkswagen

      3. 6.2.3 Ford Motor Company

      4. 6.2.4 Hyundai Motor Co.

      5. 6.2.5 Nissan Motor Co. Ltd

      6. 6.2.6 General Motors Company

      7. 6.2.7 Honda Motor Co. Ltd

      8. 6.2.8 Kia Motors Corporation

      9. 6.2.9 Ferrari SpA

      10. 6.2.10 Lamborghini SpA


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Frequently Asked Questions

The Lightweight Cars Market market is studied from 2018 - 2027.

The Lightweight Cars Market is growing at a CAGR of 5.32% over the next 5 years.

The Lightweight Cars Market is valued at 70 Billion USD in 2018.

The Lightweight Cars Market is valued at 76 Billion USD in 2027.

Asia-Pacific is growing at the highest CAGR over 2021- 2026.

Asia-Pacific holds highest share in 2021.

Toyota Motor Corporation, General Motors, Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW), Hyundai Motor Co., Nissan Motor Co. Ltd are the major companies operating in Lightweight Cars Market.

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