Steel remains the most important material input for automobile manufacture and assembly. Although the European steel industry provides inputs to a wide range of industries outside the automotive sector, the fortunes of the two sectors (especially with respect to wide strip or coil steel) have been closely linked for many years. The typical modern automobile uses a wide range of types of steel in the form of castings, forgings, turned parts and pressings. In this chapter and Chapter 6 we shall be concerned with wide coil mild steel (also known as strip steel, and sometimes sold as cut sheets) which is used in the presswork industry. In this chapter we outline the scale of steel usage in the European automotive presswork sector; the structure of the steel production and supply sector; technological change in steels; and the nature of procurement regimes in the sector. The steel and presswork supply chain is detailed in Chapter 6.
KeywordsWide Strip Coated Steel Procurement Regime Automotive Sector Automobile Assembler
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