Technical textiles are generally recognized to be the most dynamic & promising areas for the future of the textile industry and also as an emerging area for functional application of textiles. At present, it account for 20% consumption of global textile production. An automotive textile is the single largest consumer of technical textiles with over 1 million tons per annum.
Automotive textiles, which are non-apparel textiles, encompass a broad spectrum of application including interior fitments, safety facilities, tyre reinforcement, carpets, fibre composites, sound and thermal insulations, air and oil filters etc. Modern car today, uses about 11 to 15 kgs of fabric for interior and exterior purposes. A customer, of a car, looks majorly for aesthetically pleasing interiors, great comfort and fuel economy. The textile product can satisfy all these requirements and also they are constructed light weight so they offer great weight reduction which gives fuel economy.
The growth of automotive textiles is phenomenal in the last decades and so. With about 60 million cars produced in year 2005, global automobile production is expected to grow up to 70 million in 2010.Hence,it is clear that the AUTOMOTIVE TEXTILES has a immense potential to grow.
At first sight there may seem to be hardly any particular application for textiles in cars, buses or trucks .All body and engine components are made of metal and there is a glass for windows, rubber for tyres and plastic for seating and textiles for seat covers and curtains and all. But, actually an average car uses 50 sq.yds of fabric for interior & exterior purposes .Technical textiles are widely used in such application of transportation vehicles and systems including cars, buses, air planes and marine vehicles.
The authors are associated with DKTE Textile and Engineering Institute, Ichalkaranji, Maharashtra