The global Automated Guided Vehicle (AGV) market was valued at USD 1,356.5 million in 2017 and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of than 11.3% during the forecast period. AGVs are automatic transport systems capable of functioning without human intervention. They are material handling solutions equipped with automated vehicle parts such as carts and pallets along with control software, sensors, guide path, and interfaces. Automated Guided Vehicles are used for lifting, rotating, and transport of various goods in warehouse, logistic, and other production environments. Their different applications include transport of goods at storage and production facilities, retrieval in wholesale trade, supply and disposal of goods at offices and hospitals, and use in assembly platforms among others.
They are usually used in tasks requiring high volumes of repetitive movements of material, and little or no human decision-making skills. Use of these guided vehicles increases the overall efficiency and productivity, while reducing costs. They also reduce inventory damage, decrease staffing requirements, and increase profitability. AGVs are used across various industries such as distribution and logistics, manufacturing, food and beverage, automotive, aerospace, and electronics among others.
The global Automated Guided Vehicle market is influenced by increasing demand for automation of processes. Their usage simplify work processes and reduces the burden of repetitive work for humans, thereby enhancing their quality of life. They enable organizations to improve work quality and efficiency, while decreasing operational costs. Increased labor safety concerns, rising need to provide safe working environments in manufacturing industry, growing adoption in small and medium businesses, and technological advancements support the growth of the market. The demand from industries including healthcare, defense, aerospace, and food & beverage is increasing and newer applications are being explored. However, high initial cost, and high switching costs limit the adoption of AGVs in the market. SMEs are hesitant towards the implementation of these vehicles due to the complexity and costs associated with it.
The global AGV market is segmented on the basis of product, guidance technology, application, industry and region. Based on type of product, the market is segmented into assembly line vehicles, tow vehicles, pallet trucks, unit load carrier, forklift truck, and others. The navigation or guidance technology is categorized by vision guidance, inductive guidance, laser guidance, magnetic guidance, and laser guidance. The application segment is categorized into assembly, storage, distribution, transportation, packaging, others. On the basis of industry, the market is segmented into automotive, aerospace, healthcare, food and beverage, manufacturing, logistics, retail, and others. This report comprises a detailed geographic distribution of the market across North America, Europe, APAC and South America, and MEA. North America is further segmented into U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Europe is divided into Germany, UK, Italy, France, Russia, and Rest of Europe. Asia-Pacific is bifurcated into China, India, Japan, and Australia, and Rest of Asia-Pacific. Europe accounted for the largest share in the global Automated Guided Vehicle market in 2017.
The companies in the global AGV market are launching new products and expanding their portfolio to cater to the growing market demands. In August 2015, Hitachi Ltd introduced a new technology which has the ability to transport an entire shelf of products in a warehouse. The technology detects movements of shelves to perform self-localization and updates warehouse maps in real time. This technology enables these vehicles to drive autonomously without markers labeled on the floor as guidance. In 2016, Audi introduced Paula, and automated vehicle for modular assembly. This vehicle has a free navigation unit, which enables automated and autonomous execution of in-house processes. Other leading players in the market include Toyota Industries Corporation, KUKA AG, Daifuku Co. Ltd., Bastian Solutions, Inc., JBT Corporation, Swisslog Holding AG, Seegrid Corporation, Baylo, Inc., EK Automation GmbH, Kion Group AG among others.