The Impact of Additive Manufacturing Technologies on Industrial Spare Parts Strategies

Daniel Beiderbeck, University of Cambridge

Dominik Deradjat, University of Cambridge

Tim Minshall, University of Cambridge


The paper aims to investigate potential benefits and the applicability of additive manufacturing (AM) technologies for spare parts management in the automotive industry. Research results contribute to a gap in literature on strategic impact of AM technologies on the automotive after sales business. Firstly, the paper investigates the general validity of AM in the spare parts industry by utilising a working hypothesis which assumes that AM technologies will have a strategic impact on the automotive aftermarket. Secondly, interacting market partici-pants and their relation to potential applications of AM are explored. The research is exploratory in nature and employs a multi-case research approach. The analysis identified potential benefits in the automotive aftermarket to transform this business by providing individualised spare parts on demand and on location without a necessity for expensive tooling. However, the research also revealed that neither concepts are technically feasible from today’s point of view. Nevertheless, additive technologies entail advantages as outlined in this paper that will affect the automotive aftermarket in the future. The paper summarises five findings that can support research in the area.


Keywords: Additive Manufacturing, Spare Parts Management, Automotive

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