GF Automotive at a glance
GF Automotive is a technologically pioneering development partner and manufacturer of lightweight casting solutions and systems made of aluminum, magnesium, and iron for the global automotive industry as well as for industrial applications. The highly complex lightweight solutions contribute significantly to making modern vehicles lighter as well as to reducing CO2 emissions.
GF Automotive manufactures at 13 production sites in Germany, Austria, Romania, China, and the USA. It also has sales offices in these countries, as well as in Switzerland, Italy, Korea, and Japan. The research and development centers with globally recognized lightweight expertise are located in Schaffhausen (Switzerland) and Suzhou (China).
Expanding global footprint in light metal
A cornerstone of the strategy of GF Automotive is to expand its light metal expertise globally. In 2017, the division achieved two milestones: First, it acquired Eucasting Ro SRL, an aluminum die-casting specialist with two production sites in Romania. Secondly, as part of the joint venture with Linamar, it opened a new die-casting facility in North Carolina, USA. From 2018, GF Linamar will be manufacturing light metal components for the strategically important North American automotive market. The plant will be well-utilized in the upcoming years, thanks in part to a major order for instrument panels for a new pick-up model of a renowned US manufacturer. The value of the contract amounts to a total of around USD 300 million over a period of five years.
Developing new, attractive business segments
GF Automotive also aims to be active in promising markets outside the automotive segment, such as energy. For example, the division is successfully participating in the growing solar market. In 2017, it delivered thousands of castings for one of the world’s largest solar power plants located on the edge of the Moroccan desert. The special brackets from the GF Automotive plant in Leipzig (Germany) weigh almost 600 kilograms and ensure that the 180-square-meter solar reflector is perfectly aligned and maintains its position in the event of storms.
Increased offering of ready-to-mount components
More and more customers are looking for a partner who operates at multiple stages along the value chain and delivers ready-to-mount solutions from a single source. GF Automotive is responding to this growing need by offering an increasing number of these components, such as sill frame members for Audi (image left). Today, the proportion of machined parts at GF Automotive amounts to round about 30%.