The Europe automotive diagnostic tool market is expected to register a CAGR of over 4% during the forecasted period (2020 - 2025)
- On-board diagnostics (OBD) were used to monitor the initial electronic systems in the vehicle, like electronic fuel injection and ignition. With a rise in the dependency and usage of electronics in automobiles, the need for a computerized malfunction detection system has been increasing, which has led to the development of a better on-board diagnostics system.
- The EU Regulation 566/2011 dated June 19, 2011, states that manufacturers are obligated to release electronic data, enabling the precise identification of replacement parts for vehicles. The European automobile industry is subject to further regulatory amendments, such as 1400/2002, 715/2007, and 64/2012, to create a competitive landscape, in which independent operators and authorized shops compete to serve different customer segments and needs. OEMs are following the trend toward automobiles that are electronically equipped for remote diagnostics. With the support of manufacturers and favourable regulations, the automotive diagnostic tools market is surging ahead.
- The shift of the automotive industry from IC engine vehicles to electric vehicles would also have an impact on the diagnostics market, as the parameters and components in both types of vehicles differ.
Key Market Trends
Increasing Adoption in Commercial Vehicles
As the number of electrical components in an automobile increasing, the requirement for a computerized diagnostic system to monitor the complex electrical architecture in vehicles is also growing. The European Union has mandated the use of OBD 2 in light duty vehicles during the implementation of Euro 6 emission standards.
Components, such as catalyst, catalyst heater, evaporative system, air conditioning system, fuel system, oxygen sensor and heater, EGR, thermostat, fuel filler cap, particulate filter, positive crank case ventilating, and parameters, like engine misfire frequency, secondary air flow, etc. are monitored by the OBD 2, along with comprehensive component monitoring of some more components.
Owing to a severe shortage of drivers, light commercial vehicles (LCV), and medium commercial vehicle (MCV) manufacturers, all over Europe, are working to improve safety functionalities. With the increase in restrictions from government and environmental agencies, the scope for electrically powered steering is expected to become a standard feature in LCVs and MCVs. Steering electrification will be considered as a springboard for the provision of a whole array of safety and driver assistance functionalities, such as lane keeping assist, lane centring assist, and active cruise control.
By 2023, one in two LCVs and MCVs is expected to be fitted with either a fully or partially electrified system. In vehicles that are still using standard hydraulic systems, fleet managers are likely to retrofit plug-and-play electrified steering add-on modules in large numbers.
In addition to the OEM vehicle health monitoring services, aftermarket vehicle health diagnostic tools are also increasingly available now. For instance, the Integrated Vehicle Management System by Honeywell and Hum by Verizon are some of the aftermarket vehicle health diagnosing tools. The safety feature is expected to drive diagnostic features, thereby, increasing the market for automotive diagnostics.
Germany is Expected to Dominate the Market
Germany has the largest market share, and is one of the key contributors to the growth of the automotive diagnostic tools market in the EU region. The two largest market players operating in Germany, are Robert Bosch GmbH and Continental AG, which also have the largest market share. With about 30% of the total revenues in Europe, during the forecasted period, Germany is anticipated to remain the largest market for diagnostic equipment in Europe. However, the increasing influx of cost-competitive Chinese products is posing a challenge to the German manufacturers.
Vehicle component malfunction accounts for a considerable portion of crashes and accidents that happen on road. According to the Association of Advancement of Automotive Medicine, about 6% of the car accidents in Europe are due to malfunctioning of vehicles or other vehicle-related equipment. The malfunctioning of vehicle components can be identified by proper vehicle health diagnostics.
Remote vehicle health diagnostic systems, such as SYNC by Ford and Blue Link by Hyundai, have remote vehicle diagnostics features. The remote vehicle diagnostic features provide health status of vehicle components, like engine oil level and the optimum time to change oil and other fluids, suspension system and engine evaluation, time for maintenance of the vehicle, and the optimum time to change the thinning brake pads, etc.
The Europe automotive diagnostics tool market is consolidated. The major players are Bosch, Continental AG, Delphi Automotive, Snap-on, etc. Bosch occupied a significant share in the global automotive diagnostic tools market, with its popular VCI scan tools supplied to the aftermarket channels (automotive service centers, automotive dealers), as well as several OEM level diagnostic tools, manufactured for various vehicle manufacturers, especially GM vehicles. Europe and Asia were the major regions for Bosch to gain top shares in the market. Continental AG has catered to both OEM and aftermarket channels, not only in Europe but all across the world, after the acquisition of Siemens VDO in 2007. There exist several aftermarket channels, such as Autozone, OEM Tools, and etc., in the market, which supplies automotive diagnostics tools at both local and international locations.
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