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Chassis/Hardware - Entry 36


Structural Mirror Bracket
2004 DaimlerChrysler Durango and Dakota
System Supplier: Mayco Plastics, Inc.
Molder: Mayco Plastics, Inc.
Tooling Supplier: DaimlerChrysler
Material Supplier: DuPont Automotive
Resin:  Rynite 935 GF PET
This is the first structural use of polymer to reinforce sheet metal body panels in the BIW stage, replacing a steel bracket assembly. Design and material provided dimensional stability through e-coat process (350 F for one hour), and weathering resistance to water infiltration. The mirror bracket provides 86% weight reduction, 45% cost reduction, and a $400,000 welding cell elimination resulting in a $5 million savings over four years. The snap fit design allows for fast and accurate assembly and eliminates rotation. 


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 12


Carbon Fiber Reinforced Engine Frame
2005 Dr. Ing.h.c.F. Porsche AG Carrera GT
System Supplier: ATR, (Italy) & Porsche Engineering
Molder: ATR, Italy
Tooling Supplier: ATR, Italy
Material Supplier: Cytec
Resin:  Cycom 997 Epoxy
The Engine frame uses carbon fiber reinforced plastics as structural parts in a hot environment (engine compartment). The application combines the race car "rolling chassis concept" with state of the art noise insulation. Torsional stiffness could be achieved in an open car design that previously was only achievable in a closed car design. Extraordinary synthesis of technical performance and aesthetics.


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 15


Jounce Bumper/Coil Spring Isolator Assembly 
2004 General Motors Cobalt
System Supplier: Thyssen Krupp
Molder: Aircom Manufacturing
Tooling Supplier: Aircom Manufacturing
Material Supplier: BASF Corporation
Resin:  Elastollan TPU C64D TPU
The Jounce Bumper/Coil Spring Isolator Assembly uses TPU elastomer to form the upper and lower coil spring isolators while integrating the jounce bumper cup and jounce contact surface respectively. The TPU elastomer and the microcellular polyurethane (MPU) jounce bumper enhances the ride and improves durability. The fact that both materials are elastomers allows for unique ride tuning combinations. An MPU ring of material is also included for further isolation. TPU upper piece enhances isolation and eliminates the need for a steel jounce cup.


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 32


Composite Tie Rod Tubes
2004 Hendrickson International and Watson & Chalin Auxiliary Lift Axles 
System Supplier: Delphi
Molder: Horizon Sports Technology
Tooling Supplier: Oakridge National Laboratory
Material Supplier: Toray, Newport, Zoltek 
Resin:  NCT-301 (typical) Epoxy
A joint development project with Delphi and the Department of Energy created the first tie rods made from a roll wrap with continuous carbon fiber and glass fabric in an epoxy matrix. This product reduces mass of the tie rod tube by 67% with a mass savings of 13 pounds per vehicle while meeting the current tubular steel fatigue and buckling load requirements.


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 49


Door Carrier Panel
2005 Lancia Y-Epsilon
System Supplier: Lames
Molder: Ranger Group
Tooling Supplier: Ranger Group
Material Supplier: Quadrant Plastic Composites, AG
Resin:  Quadrant GMT and GMTEx 40 % GMT PP
The innovative composite GMT door module design provided many innovations over the current steel, hybrid, LFT and IM designs. The benefits of the new GMT Door module include integrated hip protection pad, crash worthiness, weight reduction, cost reduction, ease of assembly, corrosion resistance, sound absorption, functional integration of hip protection pod for impact performance, multiple fixation points, and integration of components.


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 6
Low Cost Fan Shrouds
2001 Ford F-150, Expedition, Navigator, Ranger
System Supplier: Custom Molders Inc.
Molder: Custom Molders Inc.
Tooling Supplier: Briadco Tool and Mold
Material Supplier: Spartech Polycom
Resin:  PP-5140-F1 PP
A unique double wall hoop design allowed 40% talc polypropylene to replace nylon (and glass filled/mica) fan shrouds. The 2005 Ranger fan shroud includes a molded-in power steering reservoir bracket, replacing a metal bracket.


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 23
Headlight Mounting Crossmember (HMC)
2005 DaimlerChrysler All LX models
System Supplier: Decoma-Plydex
Molder: Decoma-Plydex
Tooling Supplier: Tycos Tool and Die
Material Supplier: LanXess
Resin:  Durethan BKV30H2.0 GF PA6
A new Headlight Mounting Crossmember (HMC) design incorporates 3 differently styled front end systems using the identical insert molded metal sub-structure and only needed to validate one vehicle for component loading. Pierce-able plastic fascia supports (via a standard metal piercing tool) guarantee fit/finish between the hood and fascia. The plastic-metal structure is e-coated on line without issue to the dimensional stability to the structure. The 3 metal inserts are partially overlayed in the injection molding tool and held together by injection molding rivets in common flow through areas.


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 24
Plastic Metal Hybrid Structural Roof Frame
2005 Audi AG A6 
System Supplier: Linde & Wiemann 
Molder: ITM
Tooling Supplier: Siebenwurst
Material Supplier: LanXess
Resin:  Durethan BKV30 H2.0 PA 6 GF30
This is the first integral thermoplastic structural roof member welded into the body-in-white during vehicle assembly. This roof frame is vital for the roof structure. The part replaced a closed box section comprised of two metal "U" shaped stamping, with more than 20 spot welds to secure it into the body structure. Design achieved a 30% weight savings.


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 42
Thermoplastic Windshield Wiper Plenum 
2005 Ford Freestar
System Supplier: Valeo
Molder: Carlisle
Tooling Supplier: Build-A-Mold
Material Supplier: BASF
Resin:  Petra 140 BK-112 PET
This design integrated the wiper pivot towers into the injection molded plenum, which improved wipe angle tolerance and eliminated the need for post molding assembly/attachment of pivots towers. The motor mounts are molded into the IM part, whereas the previous SMC part required the use of a metal bracket to attach the wiper motor. Application resulted in a two-pounds weight savings per vehicle. The part design provides more consistent wipe quality. A Patent was issued for this innovative design.


Chassis/Hardware - Entry 48
Spare Wheel Well
1997 DaimlerChrysler A, C, S and E Class Models 
System Supplier: Aksys
Molder: Aksys
Tooling Supplier: None
Material Supplier: Quadrant Plastic Composites
Resin:  Quadrant GMT and GMTEx D100F40 and GMTex GF PP
The new spare wheel well design uses GMT composites to lower overall part and manufacturing costs. Material does not shatter or splinter during high speed rear impact conditions. Other benefits from the composite design compared to steel designs include a 50% weight reduction, parts integration and improved NVH.