Livonia, MI, November 16, 2011 --(PR.com
)-- Automakers are driven to design lightweight cars that will meet increasing fuel efficiency requirements – 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025 – and satisfy consumer appetite for high-quality vehicles. They’re finding that they can lose vehicle weight and gain styling with engineering thermoplastics and composite materials.
Adopting lightweight polymers and polyurethane composites to replace traditional materials such as glass and metal in exterior applications, including window glazing and body panel components, can help reduce vehicle mass while retaining strength. From load floors to roofs to chassis and interior applications, Bayer’s automotive material solutions can help automakers meet today’s and the future’s challenges.
Bruce Benda, vice president, Automotive Marketing, Bayer MaterialScience LLC, highlighted automotive challenges and solutions during his presentation “Lightweighting Trends and the Need for Innovative Solutions” at this year’s Plastics in Lightweight and Electric Vehicles North American Conference which took place Nov. 7-9 in Livonia, Mich.
“Automakers’ ‘Drive to 54.5’ is underway,” Benda said. “Their challenge to lose vehicle weight and keep it off is creating an ever-greater interest in exploring new materials and processes that deliver low cost, light weight and luxurious design. The benefits of engineering thermoplastics and polyurethane composites can help make it achievable.”
For instance, using Makrolon® polycarbonate to replace heavy glass can reduce a vehicle’s glazing mass by up to 50 percent, helping to cut fuel consumption. Additionally, strong and lightweight polyurethane composite structures utilized in load floors and roof modules have the potential to trim 20 – 30 pounds of weight in a finished vehicle.
About Bayer MaterialScience LLC:
Bayer MaterialScience LLC is one of the leading producers of polymers and high-performance plastics in North America and is part of the global Bayer MaterialScience business with approximately 14,700 employees at 30 production sites around the world and 2010 sales of 10.2 billion euros. The company manufactures high-tech polymer materials and develops innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, electrical and electronics, construction, medical, and sports and leisure industries. Sustainability is central to Bayer MaterialScience LLC’s business and is based around the key areas of innovation, product stewardship, excellence in corporate management, social responsibility and respect for the environment.