“Made in Germany”: Sourcing Europe's Most Innovative Custom Parts Manufacturers

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Continuously improving to stay leagues ahead of the technological curve, Germany’s highly integrated manufacturing and education ecosystems have built a manufacturing sector that prides itself on part quality compliance and high-quality throughput across a diverse array of manufacturing verticals. 

Which has made Germany a global manufacturing and exports heavyweight, second only to the United States manufacturing sector in many advanced manufacturing processes. 

Whether it’s automotive or aerospace manufacturing or the manufacture of highly sophisticated custom and MRO parts, Germany’s penchant for the inventive and progressive design and engineering has positioned its manufacturing market as one that can continuously meet myriad sourcing needs from diverse sourcing professionals around the globe. 

And the market appears to only be growing and evolving.

Despite recent concerns over a recent month-over-month slowdown in the country’s Purchasing Managers’ Index, Germany’s year-over-year growth in the manufacturing sector (3.5% year/year) reinforces the paradigm that Germany’s historically robust and resilient manufacturing industry continues to be a bastion of manufacturing power – not only in the region, but also the world.

Related: Source Expert German Manufacturers Ready To Make Your Parts Today


Before diving any further into Germany’s manufacturing industry and the subsectors that define its top-tier reputation around the world, there’s something that must be said:

While Germany’s worldwide manufacturing and exports repute is often directly associated with big industry names like Volkswagon, Boeing, and Bayer, it’s the small-to-medium sized businesses that truly fuel the German economy.

“Small and medium-size companies … make up the backbone of the German economy. These companies are often global players but still produce locally, selling specialty products that can command premium prices around the world.” – The Wall Street Journal: Behind Germany’s Success Story in Manufacturing

Collectively referred to as the “Mittelstand,” Germany’s small-to-medium sized enterprises make up some 99% of Germany’s business sector. Of these, countless are family-oriented manufacturers of highly customized parts and products, ranging from machinery to electrical components and metal fabricated products. Most for the regional automotive, aerospace, and medical manufacturing subsectors.

But that doesn’t mean that Germany’s SMEs are small-time in all of their manufacturing efforts. More and more, German SMEs are realizing that the power of international trade isn’t just for name brands: many SME business owners are with vigor championing expansion beyond Germany and Europe.

Related: Log In or Register and Find Out If German Manufacturers Are Right For Your Sourcing Needs

For buyers of custom manufactured parts either in the U.S. or abroad, this is a very good thing. It means that more and more German manufacturers and custom parts suppliers are looking for work from overseas sourcing professionals, design engineers, product engineers, and procurement professionals. If you're looking for high-quality parts, and don't mind paying little more for that quality, German manufacturers may be a fit for your parts. 

“To stay competitive, they [German manufacturers] need to produce their goods globally and service them wherever their customers are. They want to learn from ‘innovative customers’ around the world” The Economist: Many Countries Want a Mittelstand Like Germany’s

It’s evident that German manufacturers understand the shifting ethos within the manufacturing industry on a whole: Today, buyers of custom manufactured parts demand supplier flexibility, supplier expertise, and supplier speed. Today, buyers of custom manufactured parts expect their parts to be delivered yesterday – and with expert quality.

German manufacturers understand that. And are delivering …  

German SME Manufacturers


Responsible for more than $46 billion in revenue each year for the German economy (or more than 3.5% of the nation’s manufacturing output), German aerospace manufacture ring has grown exponentially in the last two to three decades. Since 1995, the German aerospace sector has taken off not only the increasing need to replace aging aircraft, but also because German manufacturers of custom aerospace parts have built a sturdy foundation through technological innovation, placing them leagues above nearly every other nation in terms of aerospace research and development.

With a focus on energy efficiency in both its manufacturing processes and end-products, German aerospace manufacturing is spreading its wings wide, taking flight in fleets and private jets around the world.

“As a global aerospace hub, Germany is home to leading players from all civil and defense aviation market segments. Particular strengths are seen in energy efficiency-related technologies, including the development and production of lightweight materials and engine efficiency optimization. Strong competencies in the field of energy efficiency are based on extensive R&D efforts and are also triggered by the country’s ‘Energy Transition’ project." -- Germany Trade & Invest: The Aerospace Industry in Germany

German Aerospace Manufacturers

Employing more than 100,000 Germans, Germany’s aerospace manufacturing sector is one of the largest and most influential manufacturing subsector in the world.Segmented into three sub-verticals [civilian aerospace manufacturing, military aerospace manufacturing, and manufacturing for space exploration], German manufacturing companies and enterprises like Boeing, Rolls Royce, and countless SMEs are revolutionizing the global aerospace and aviation industries by providing break-through innovations in energy efficiency, aerodynamics, and advanced parts manufacturing.

Related: Source Expert German Aerospace Manufacturers Now

For example, Boeing Corporation’s new aerospace manufacturing factory in Munich “will research and apply innovative 3D printing materials and production methods for the aerospace industry, with a focus on developing lightweight, cost-efficient, and structurally complex propulsion systems. -- Airbus Group to establish 3D printing Aerospace Factory in Germany

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Coupled with Germany’s innate fascination and predisposition with innovation and technology, the nation’s expert aerospace manufacturers provide buyers and potential buyers of custom manufactured parts in the aerospace vertical secure and highly progressive avenues by which to source their parts. Dramatically decreasing supplier risk and exponentially increasing part quality across the board. 


Driving the German economy at an outlandish pace, automotive manufacturing in Germany has a rich and robust past. Recognized across the globe as a perennial leader in the industry, German automotive manufacturers took their first curve at break-neck in 1886 with the development of the very first petrol-powered automobile – designed and manufactured by Karl Benz, founder of the world renowned Mercedes-Benz.

Unmatched both regionally and globally, Germany’s preeminently advanced automotive manufacturing sector is the most massive contributor to the German economy, outpacing all other manufacturing sectors, such as German aerospace manufacturing, medical device manufacturing, and custom machine manufacturing.

Needless to say, the sector is an enormous contributor to the global economy.

$249 billion big.

That’s how much German automotive manufacturers contributed to Germany’s economy in 2015 alone. With household names like Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi, Porsche, and Volkswagon all native Germans, it’s no surprise. the country has been an engineering and innovation leader in the automotive industry for more than 100 years.

“Global demand for vehicles “Made in Germany” remains strong, with exports accounting for three quarters of all domestic vehicle production (equivalent to almost 4.3 million vehicles and an annual increase of three percent). Germany was the most significant exporter of passenger cars in 2014, ahead of Japan and South Korea.” – GTAI: The Automotive Industry in Germany

German Automotive Manufacturers

Respected around the world for quality of design, technologically advanced reliability, and state-of-the-art engineering design, German automotive manufacturers lead the world in sector research and development, and are responsible for one-third of the world’s R&D expenditure in automotive manufacturing.

What’s more, with over 40 diverse medium-to-large OEMs calling Germany home, the automotive manufacturing industry in Germany isn’t just focused on researching, developing, and implementing savvy and ultramodern technological advancements on the home-front, but also sharing that knowledge with manufacturers, engineers, sourcing professionals, and inventors around the world.

“Germany boasts 21 of the world’s top 100 automotive OEM suppliers. Of these 21 companies, 18 belong to the top 50 automotive suppliers in Europe. Breaking the figures down further still, six belong to the top 25 global suppliers by size.” – GTAI

And it’s not just the production of end-product motor vehicles that sets Germany’s automotive sector head shoulders above every other country on the planet.

In 2014, German automotive manufacturers exported more than $60 billion in automotive parts to countries like the United States, the United Kingdom, France, China, and countless others.

To put that in perspective, that’s 16.2% of the global total in automotive parts exports.

And more and more often, companies such as BASF, Schaeffler AG, and many others are shifting the landscape of automotive parts manufacturing by understanding that to be competitive in today’s global manufacturing marketplace, technology must iterate at a blistering pace – and that that technology has to get into the right hands of sourcing professionals and engineers around the world.

“Equipment giants Bosch GmbH, Continental AG, and ZF Friedrichshafen AG, which are expanding into mega-suppliers able to leverage new technologies for all parts of a vehicle, have started working closely with the U.S. technology giants … Germany’s suppliers, whose brands generally aren’t visible to car owners, could be in a better position to benefit from the convergence of Silicon Valley and the auto industry than their customers — the car makers.” – The Wall Street Journal: German Car-Parts Makers See Bigger Role in Technology

Buyers of Custom Manufactured Parts: Are You Sourcing Expert German Custom Parts Manufacturers?  

Second only to American custom parts manufacturers, German manufacturers of custom parts are top-tier leaders in part quality compliance, technological innovation, and state-of-the-art research and development in myriad manufacturing areas.

From aerospace manufacturing to automotive manufacturing and advanced medical and electronics manufacturing, “Made in Germany” continues to be efficient and highly reliable. Even at sometimes-higher price-points, German manufacturing companies are renowned for part quality compliance, and quality manufacturing processes across the board. 

So, if you’re looking to get quality parts fast, and don't mind paying a little more for certain parts and products, sourcing German manufacturers on the cutting-edge of technology is a savvy place to start.

Outpaced by only the United States in part quality, advanced manufacturing processes, and quality manufacturing throughput, German manufacturers pride themselves on decreasing time to market and producing superior parts – for any buyer, regardless of location or need.

Some of the best small-to-medium sized German manufacturers call home and are waiting to win your business – Today!

So stop waiting. Log In or Register and start sourcing some of the most advanced and dependable custom parts manufacturers on the planet today.

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