Almost every vehicle is assembled with modular design principles. The bodywork forms the skeleton, in which a large number of vehicle parts are installed. It is estimated that a car contains on average around 10,000 individual parts – from the boot lid to the door handle or individual valves, screws, and plugs. A large proportion of such parts are made of metal from specialized suppliers.
Here are the 3 largest parts suppliers with a focus on metal, directly from our list of the 250 largest automotive suppliers in Germany.
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1st place: Schaeffler AG, Herzogenaurach: 14.4 billion euros in revenue (2019)
The Schaeffler Group is a family-owned automotive supplier headquartered in Herzogenaurach, Franconia, operating in the market under the brands INA, FAG (formerly FAG Kugelfischer) and LuK. The company is closely linked to the tire manufacturer Continental through a significant shareholding. Schaeffler AG and Continental AG are sister companies. Schaeffler manufactures clutch systems, transmission parts, camshaft phasing units, wheel bearings, and drive components made of metal for the automotive industry. The Schaeffler Group operates worldwide. It is represented in more than 170 locations in over 50 countries and employs approximately 92,000 people.
2nd place: Rheinmetall AG, Düsseldorf: €6.3 billion group sales; €2.7 billion automotive in revenue (2019)
Rheinmetall manufactures military equipment and operates as an automotive supplier under the umbrella of Rheinmetall Automotive AG. Rheinmetall Automotive AG was created in 1997 from the merger of KS Kolbenschmidt GmbH Neckarsulm and Pierburg GmbH Neuss. Metallic pistons and plain bearings for gasoline and diesel engines form a focal point of the production program. In addition, Rheinmetall Automotive manufactures valves, pumps, actuators and other engine parts. The company has some 40 production sites in Europe, America and Asia and employs a workforce of around 11,000.
3rd place: Diehl Stiftung & Co. KG, Nuremberg: sales of 3.7 billion euros (2018)
The Diehl Corporate Group in Nuremberg was founded in 1902 and is family-owned. It achieves the major part of its sales as an equipment supplier for the aerospace industry and as a defence company. The Diehl Metall business area also produces parts for the automotive industry. Diehl Metall mainly handles metal engines and aggregate components, transmission parts, and parts for thermal systems. This division generates about one quarter of Diehl’s sales. The Diehl Corporate Group has about 17,000 employees. Besides Germany, Diehl Metall also produces in France, Brazil and China.
Picture source: Kayle Kaupanger
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