• Groupe Renault for the first thermoplastic composite guide rails for a sunroof module on the 2016 Scenic MPV. The composite guide rails, made from a glass fiber, ABS and styrene maleic anhydride blend, reduce production from seven steps to two. Sunroof installation on the assembly line is also reduced to a one-step, top-loaded process, resulting in a 20 percent cost savings. Webasto SE supplies the system. The ARRK Group's Shapers supplies the tooling.
• Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV for the thermoplastic liftgate on the 2019 Jeep Cherokee. The thermoplastic liftgate replaces the steel design and enables a 28 percent mass reduction in addition to a 50 percent tooling and capital investment savings. The automaker said it is an industry-first use of conformal infrared welding behind the molded-in-color grain Class A surface. Magna International Inc. is the Tier 1 supplier, with materials from Trinseo SA and LyondellBassell NV. Tycos Tool & Die Co., a division of Magna Exteriors, supplies the tooling.
• Fiat Chrysler for the injection molded rear bumper step reinforcement on the 2019 Ram 1500 pickup. The one-piece glass fiber-reinforced polypropylene part replaces an all-metal rear bumper assembly. The plastic rear bumper maintains a chromed metal shell and achieves an 8-pound weight savings. Flex-N-Gate Corp. supplies the system, with material from Celanese Corp. Integrity Tool & Mold Inc. supplies the tooling.
• General Motors Co. for a bumper bracket on the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado pickup. The glass fiber-reinforced polypropylene bumper bracket replaces a stamped steel design. The plastic bracket allows for the integration of fog lamp mounting in the design and mass savings. Flex-N-Gate and its Ventra Plastics division supply the system, with tooling from Integrity Tool & Mold. Mitsui Chemicals Inc. and Lotte Advanced Materials Co. Ltd. supply the material.
• PSA Group for the lighted headliner on the 2013 Peugeot 2008 SUV. The decorative application of ambient lighting utilizes the integration of a planar light guide with LEDs embedded in a flexible cable. This is done in a wet polyurethane compression molding process. Common tooling from Grupo Antolin, which also supplies the system, allows for vehicle upgrades compatible with standard versions. Oroglas supplies the acrylic.
• SAIC General Motors Corp. Ltd., GM's Chinese joint venture, for the door trim panel on the 2016 Buick LaCrosse sedan. The injection molded part is produced via chemical foaming with a core-back process and achieves a 26 percent weight savings vs. a comparable industry standard application. Cycle time is also reduced by about 20 percent. Yanfeng Automotive Interiors supplies the system and tooling. Suzhou Runjia Engineering Plastics Ltd. Co. and Mitsui Chemicals supply the material.
• Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd. for what it says is the first instrument panel with long glass fiber on a visual surface on the 2019 FE-6 sedan. The new design integrates polished and grained areas into one part with one tool, resulting in overall weight reduction and a cost savings of $2.20 per vehicle. SH Global Co. Ltd. supplies the system, with tooling from Taizhou Huangyan Tianhui Mould Co. Ltd. Materials are from Celanese.
• Ford for the integrated modular pelvic bolster on the 2018 Lincoln Navigator SUV. The application combines two side-impact bolster designs into one and integrates the part into the door trim map packet. The condensed design offers an estimated cost savings of $100,000 in tooling and a 10 percent weight reduction. Faurecia supplies the system, using polypropylene material from LyondellBassell. Roush Industries Inc. supplies the tooling.
• Fiat Chrysler for the hybrid control arm with an integral ball joint on the 2019 Ram 1500. The automaker said this is the first usage of engineered plastic in the structure of a control arm for a high-volume production, light-duty full-size truck. The glass fiber-reinforced nylon part is injection molded over a welded steel stamping assembly, resulting in a 13 percent weight reduction and improved fuel economy. Iljin Group supplies the system, with materials from BASF Corp.
• Ford for the integrated window regulator system on the 2019 Focus. The system features integrated organo fibers overmolded in a plastic material. The application achieves a 30 percent cost reduction as well as weight savings. Brose North America Inc. supplies the system and tooling. Materials are from Lanxess AG and Borealis AG.
• Ford for the sonic welded fog lamp and air curtain bracket on the 2018 Mustang. The one-piece, sonic welded bracket features a living hinge that is molded into the bracket, forming the duct for the air curtain. The application enables an annual weight savings of 0.2 pounds per vehicle and the elimination of 1.6 million fasteners. Flex-N-Gate supplies the system, with tooling from Omega Tool Corp. Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (Sabic) supplies the TPO material.
• Fiat Chrysler for the high-strength, self-tapping composite nut on the 2016 Chrysler Pacifica minivan. The composite nut has self-healing properties that allow it to maintain sufficient torque and clamp load even after being stripped. Estimated cost savings are around $3.25 per vehicle. ITW Deltar Fasteners supplies the system, using material from Asahi Kasei Corp. and tooling from Maple Mold Technologies Inc.
• Ford for the foamed extension dash panel on the 2019 Edge SUV. The dash panel is made with recycled polypropylene sourced from carpet backing and filled with recycled tire rubber and 20 percent glass. The part is injection molded with MuCell foaming, enabling a weight savings of 0.52 pounds and a cost reduction of 28 percent. Ford said 11.9 million square feet of carpet and more than 26,000 pounds of tire material were recycled for the application. Windsor Mold Inc. supplies the system. Materials are from Wellman Advanced Materials LLC and Lehigh Technologies Inc.
• Ford for the use of sustainable hybrid composites on the 2018 Lincoln Continental luxury sedan. The automaker said the industry-first application of composites combining cellulose fiber from trees with long glass fiber in a polypropylene matrix results in a $2 million cost savings achieved by reducing weight and cycle times by 20-40 percent. Summit Polymers Inc. is the Tier 1 supplier and toolmaker. The composite materials are from Celanese and International Paper Co.
• Ford for what it says is the first-time use of recycled, molded-in-color TPO for Class A components on the 2019 Transit van. Materials, supplied by Canuck Compounders Inc., include recycled polypropylene from automotive regrind and FDA-approved plastics. Magna is the Tier 1 supplier.