Founded in 1997, Faurecia has grown to become a major player in the global automotive industry. A leader in its four areas of business, the Group is backed by a R&D and production network with production sites in 34 countries. It is the preferred partner of the world's largest automakers, which value its operational excellence and technological expertise.
Consumer expectations and regulatory changes are the two main drivers of change in the automotive market. Faurecia is involved in designing the cars of the future by pursuing innovation in three areas: technologies that make cars cleaner, vehicle weight reduction and other technologies to improve fuel economy, and solutions to enhance life-on-board in terms of comfort and style.
Faurecia’s technologies to develop cleaner and more fuel-efficient vehicles begin with weight savings. A 10 kg weight reduction of a vehicle lowers its fuel consumption and leads to a drop in CO2 emissions of 1 g per km. Through new product architectures and optimized design, the development and use of alternative materials and new production processes, Faurecia can offer weight reductions of up to 120 kg per vehicle within the 300 kg package it provides. This reduction is achieved compared to traditional materials, and in particular through the use of composite materials and in particular carbon fibers.
Weight savings are a vital part of innovation at Faurecia, leading to new design solutions and optimized steel thickness for seat structures and exhaust systems. To this end, composites pave the way for groundbreaking solutions to reduce the weight and ecological footprint of vehicles. Use of carbon fiber composites can produce weight savings in excess of 50% compared with steel.
In terms of fuel economy, Faurecia is also working on energy-recovery solutions. In an internal combustion engine, around one third of the energy contained in the fuel is dissipated in exhaust heat. Faurecia is developing technologies that can recover part of this available thermal energy to help reduce fuel consumption up to 10%.
Faurecia is also a specialist in life-on-board which starts by reducing noise coming from the engine and going to the exhaust systems as well as interior acoustic components to avoid noise coming inside the cabin. Faurecia is as well a safety specialist for all of its activities (bumpers, seats, instrument panels and door panels). Faurecia develops advanced comfort products to enhance life-on-board, connectivity and personalization through decoration or function integration.
The Faurecia Group is now recognized as a pioneer in technological innovations able to reduce the weight of vehicles, offer customized comfort and style solutions, and mitigate any impact on the environment. At the same time, Faurecia is developing new manufacturing processes that are set to revolutionize its production methods.
Group Technology Strategy Vice President
Christophe Aufrère is Group Technology Strategy Vice President since 2011.
He is in charge of defining the key technologies Faurecia will address in the future and to follow their implementation at the global level. He is also responsible for managing and developing the expertise network throughout the entire R&D organization and the academic partnerships.
Prior to his current position, he spent 20 years in the Faurecia Automotive Seating activity in different positions within the R&D department until Structures and Mechanisms R&D Vice President and CTO for Seat Complete and Metal.
Prior to Faurecia, he spent three years at Rockwell Automotive Body Systems in Advanced Engineering working on electric motors and door systems.
Chistophe Aufrere is a graduate from the Ecole Supérieure des Techniques Aéronautiques et de Construction Automobile (ESTACA).
He is a member of the CTA, French Technical Automotive Committee.