Tata and DuPont team up on air cooler parts

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NEW DELHI (Feb. 9, 9:20 p.m. ET) — A unit of Indian car maker Tata is using DuPont nylon materials in air coolers in four its car models, adopting the material in the turbo-diesel systems used to improve performance in smaller, energy efficient cars, the materials company announced Feb. 6.

The collaboration with Pune, India-based Tata Toyo comes as DuPont also opened a technical innovation center in Pune, an automotive hub in the country.

In an interview at the Plastindia trade show, held Feb. 1-6 in New Delhi, DuPont officials said the Pune center is focused on light-weighting and sustainable mobility, with 70 percent of its work there being done for the automotive industry.

Tata Toyo, a joint venture of Tata AutoComp Systems Ltd., and Japan’s Toyo Radiator Co. Ltd. and Mitsubishi Corp., is using the DuPont Zytel Plus nylon to replace another nylon material, but it is also looking at opportunities to replace metals to help make its cars lighter, DuPont said.

The material is being used in passenger cars, utility vehicles and light commercial vehicles in India, DuPont said.

“Turbo systems are one of several technologies the industry is quickly adopting to boost the performance of smaller, more efficient engines,” said Patrick Ferronato, director of automotive for DuPont. “The environment these power-boost technologies create is challenging the capabilities of many existing engineering thermoplastics.”

The Pune center is the company’s fourth in Asia Pacific, and joins similar innovation centers in South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand.

The company also plans to open innovation centers in the United States and Brazil this year, said Christina So, regional marketing communications manager in DuPont’s Asia Pacific Performance Polymers unit.