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Plastics & Elastomers
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Automotive industry likes polymers II – Exterior and structural parts

SpecialChem / Feb 11, 2004

For the 50 million new cars produced each year, the polymer applications are very diversified according to: * The countries, * The carmakers even in the same country * The diffusion of the model * The rank of the model in the global range The motivations to use plastics and composites are varied: * Technical: conformity to the impact regulations, design freedom to optimise aerodynamics, aesthetics… * Economical: Choice of processes allowing mass production, small series, concept cars, special models. * Environmental: the reduction of fuel consumption and gas emission needs lighter vehicles and better aerodynamics. Polymers and composites are used in very different functions and at very various frequencies according to the state of development and the car models: * Well established applications, for example: o Bumpers o Body elements such as panels, doors, fenders, spoilers o Lights: headlights, rear and side lights. o Sealing: weatherstrips, light seals. o Ancillary equipments such as rear-view mirror housings, wheel trims, luggage boxes, bases for roof racks

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