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Global Transmission Fluid Market - Outlook and Forecast 2022-2027
The global transmission fluid market recorded a value of USD 10.32 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach USD 13.96 billion by 2027, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.15%. Transmission fluid plays a crucial role in lubricating the transmission assembly, which includes the transmission, gearbox, and axle. Its primary function is to reduce friction and heat generated during operation. With high-speed gearbox operations, the use of high-quality lubricants becomes essential to prevent vehicle malfunctions. Transmission fluid significantly improves vehicle performance by facilitating the transfer of power from the engine to the wheels. It acts as a lubricant during the operation of the transmission assembly, protecting various moving parts such as the clutch, gearbox, propeller shaft, differential, and axle.
Historically, transmission fluids were primarily manufactured from mineral oils derived from crude oil. However, as automotive technology advanced, the performance of mineral oil-based transmission fluid fell short of meeting the requirements of new engines and transmissions. As a result, there has been a rapid increase in demand for synthetic oil-based transmission fluid and additives. Technological advancements in the industry have enabled the development of transmission fluids that cater to diverse needs, including extending the transmission’s shelf life, reducing carbon emissions, improving fuel economy, providing low-viscosity lubricants, and complying with increasingly stringent vehicle emission standards. The growing use of passenger cars in emerging economies has further contributed to the expansion of the transmission fluid market.
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USD 10.3 billion in 2020
Applications, Oil Type, and Region
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The demand for commercial and passenger vehicles in countries such as India, China, Brazil, and South Korea has been steadily increasing, driven by significant developments in the automotive and infrastructure industries. Over the past few decades, these industries have seen remarkable growth in research and development, production capacity, competitive standards, and continued advancements. In emerging economies, the infrastructure sector has flourished due to factors such as low-cost labor, availability of raw materials, government subsidies, and high levels of foreign direct investment (FDI). According to the International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers (OICA), emerging economies have experienced rapid growth in their automobile industries since 2005, driven by industrialization and increased FDI. This growth has created job opportunities with higher purchasing power for consumers. Additionally, during the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for passenger cars increased as people favored private vehicles over public transportation. The transport of food and medical supplies also contributed to the surge in demand for commercial vehicles.
Although electric vehicles (EVs) primarily rely on electric motors, they still require transmission assemblies to transfer power from the motors to the wheels. Therefore, EVs also benefit from the use of transmission fluid for optimal vehicle performance. Many governments and automotive manufacturers are actively promoting the production and usage of electric cars to achieve environmental objectives and combat rising crude oil prices. Electric vehicles offer greater efficiency compared to conventional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles and significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution. In response to the growing market for EVs, lubricant manufacturers like Castrol (UK), Valvoline (US), Shell PLC (US), and TotalEnergies (France) have introduced transmission fluids specifically designed for EVs. Consequently, an increase in the EV fluids market will drive the demand for transmission fluid.
In developed countries such as the US, Germany, and Japan, the passenger car market has reached maturity, with a large portion of the population already owning at least one car per person. Therefore, there are no major factors driving the demand for passenger cars in these regions, which subsequently impacts the transmission fluid market. Additionally, the GDP growth in these developed countries has been relatively slow compared to emerging economies like India, Indonesia, and China. Economic conditions play a significant role in the development of the passenger car market, as people tend to purchase more cars during favorable economic periods. The US Bureau of Transportation Statistics reveals that the average number of vehicles per household in the US is 1.9. Similarly, Germany has 566 cars per 1000 people, China has 173 cars per 1000 individuals, Indonesia has 78 vehicles per 1000 individuals, and India has 225 cars per 1000 individuals. These statistics indicate a significantly higher number of cars in developed countries, indicating a stable demand for passenger cars. Therefore, the passenger car market in developed nations such as the US, Germany, and Japan is considered mature, resulting in steady demand and a potential negative impact on the transmission fluid market.
The market is segmented based on various factors, including applications, oil type, and region.
Segmentation by Applications
Segmentation by Oil Type
Fully Synthetic Oil
Segmentation by Geography
North America – US, Canada
Europe – Germany, France, UK, Italy, Spain, Russia, Rest of Europe
APAC – China, Japan, India, South Korea, Indonesia, Rest of APAC
Latin America – Brazil, Mexico, Rest of Latin America
Middle East & Africa – South Africa, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Iran, Rest of MEA
The largest segment in the transmission fluid market is expected to be passenger cars. Transmission fluid is the most commonly used automotive lubricant in passenger cars. The demand for passenger cars is boosted by continuous innovations and technological advances, which in turn positively impact the demand for transmission fluid. Recent events such as the COVID-19 pandemic have further increased the demand for passenger cars, as individuals prefer personal vehicles over public transportation. Moreover, emerging economies are experiencing rapid growth in the passenger car market due to increased foreign direct investments (FDIs) and industrialization.
Transmission fluid is typically available in three oil types: fully synthetic, semi-synthetic, and mineral oil. While each oil type has its advantages, the fully synthetic oil-based transmission fluid segment is the largest in the market. Synthetic lubricants are derived from Group III, Group IV, and Group V base oils. Although fully synthetic oil is more expensive compared to mineral oil and semi-synthetic oil, it provides consumers with premium-quality transmission fluid. Fully synthetic transmission fluids consist of American Petroleum Institute (API)-grade group IV and V base oils with additives that improve fluid performance. As a result, the demand for semi-synthetic and mineral oils is growing in emerging economies where customers prioritize affordability. Synthetic oils enhance vehicle performance, offer excellent parts protection, and improve fuel efficiency.
The global transmission fluid market is diverse, encompassing numerous established and potential growth markets. The Asia-Pacific (APAC) region leads the market due to its low labor costs and abundant availability of raw materials. Additionally, the automotive segment in APAC has demonstrated significant growth in recent years, serving as a major driving factor for the transmission fluid market. APAC is projected to dominate the market throughout the forecast period. However, other countries with significant potential for expansion pose a challenge to APAC’s dominance.
The key players in the transmission fluid market have implemented diverse strategies to foster growth. Companies operating in the transmission fluid industry engage in strategic competition. The pursuit of sustainable practices and initiatives poses a challenge for all global companies. Investments in research and development, technological advancements, and addressing environmental and economic challenges contribute to the demand for innovative and sustainable transmission fluid products.
Key companies profiled in this report include Castrol Limited, Chevron Corporation, ExxonMobil, Shell PLC, TotalEnergies, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited, BP PLC, FUCHS, Gazpromneft – Lubricants Ltd, GS Caltex Corporation, Gulf Oil International limited, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited, Idemitsu Kosan Co., Ltd., Indian Oil Corporation Limited, Kuwait Dana Lubes Company, Liqui Moly, Motul, Pennzoil, Petro-Canada Lubricant Inc., Petroliam Nasional Berhad (PETRONAS), Phillips 66, Ravensberger Schmierstoffvertrieb GmbH (Ravenol), Repsol, Sinopec, Valvoline Inc.
Key Questions Answered
WHAT IS THE CURRENT SIZE OF THE TRANSMISSION FLUID MARKET?
The global transmission fluid market was valued at USD 10.32 billion in 2021.
WHAT IS THE PROJECTED GROWTH RATE OF THE GLOBAL TRANSMISSION FLUID MARKET?
The global transmission fluid market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.15% during the forecast period.
WHAT ARE THE MAIN DRIVERS OF GROWTH IN THE GLOBAL TRANSMISSION FLUID MARKET?
The major growth factors in the global transmission fluid market include the increasing demand for passenger cars and commercial vehicles in emerging economies, the development of new engines and transmission assembly, and the rising development of eco-friendly transmission fluids.
WHO ARE THE KEY PLAYERS IN THE GLOBAL TRANSMISSION FLUID MARKET?
The key players in the global transmission fluid market include Castrol Limited, Chevron Corporation, ExxonMobil, Shell PLC, and TotalEnergies.
WHICH GEOGRAPHICAL REGION DOMINATES THE TRANSMISSION FLUID MARKET?
North America holds the largest share in the transmission fluid market.