Outsourcing Practices in Automotive Supply Networks: An Exploratory Study of Full Service Vehicle Suppliers

Luciano Ciravegna, Pietro Romano, Alan Pilkington

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Most automotive companies outsource the design, manufacturing and assembly of some complete cars to independent suppliers or full service vehicle companies (FSVs). FSVs represent a relatively unexplored form of outsourcing which combines joint efforts in developing a modular product with the externalisation of specific niche manufacturing processes. On the basis of comparative cases and of qualitative information collected within three FSVs and three OEMs, this study aims to investigate the associated advantages and risks for FSVs, commonalities/differences from the practices of outsourcing to component/module specialists that can be found in other industries and why and for what kind of products FSVs can be appropriate in automotive supply networks. The study contributes to the debate on outsourcing in the automotive industry by providing an original interpretation on why FSVs have recently seen a shakeout with some growing whilst others have faltered.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Production Research
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)2478-2490
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

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