ALBANY, N.Y. — A New York research firm estimates that the global automotive plastics market could reach $32.9 billion by the end of 2018, up from $15.1 billion in 2012.
Transparency Market Research of Albany said in its new report that the demand for growth will come from both expanding auto production in Asia and plastics use in existing markets to decrease vehicle weight.
In 2011, the Asia Pacific region was responsible for 50 percent of the total auto plastics consumption by volume, the research company said in a March 28 press release. With demand for new cars in developing regions only expected to increase, demand for auto plastics will also build.
Polypropylene is the most widely used plastic in the auto industry, the research group said, and is likely to remain at the top of the list through 2018.
Polyurethane, ABS, PVC and polyethylene round out the top five.
Electronics, interior and exterior trim account for almost 70 percent of all plastics used in the auto industry, although new developments for under-the-hood parts are likely to drive more interest in the future.