Structure & Hardware
Advanced plastics, polymer composites, and carbon fiber-reinforced plastics enable remarkable improvements in safety, design, and performance. Enter a whole new era in vehicle sustainability. Plastics enable vehicle structure and hardware in many different ways.
New material formulas and technology are making vehicles lighter, increasing fuel efficiency and battery range all while enabling flexible, more aesthetically pleasing design.
The 2014 Dodge SRT Viper features a structurally critical component drop-in autoclave-cured carbon fiber-reinforced composite engine X-brace which is 50% lighter than its previous aluminum counterpart but meets stiffness requirements. An exposed-weave finish compliments the same finish found on the underside of the hood.
The 2014 Ford Edge Sport featured an innovative, integrated rear camera retention/attachment device injection molded from PA 6/6, replacing 4 separate parts and reducing costs and labor, while positioning the camera to minimize rotation and movement that can lead to distorted views.
A blow molded grille reinforcement adds stiffness to the chromed ABS grille assembly on the 2016 Nissan Titan. Cost and weight were each reportedly reduced by 25% vs. a stamped steel reinforcement solution. During production, excess material is punched out and then reprocessed to form subsequent parts.
The 2016 Ford Shelby GT350 Mustang sports a carbon fiber composite grille-opening reinforcement 2-piece injection molded box-section design. The new design reportedly reduced component mass by 24% and NVH values by 2Hz.