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Polyamide-centric engine mounting system reduces weight by about 20 percent

April 19, 2016

2 Min Read
Polyamide-centric engine mounting system reduces weight by about 20 percent

German Tier 1 ContiTech (Hannover, Germany) has developed an engine mounting system in which almost all the functional components of the hydraulic mounts are made of polyamide (PA) resin. The system is used in the 2016 Chevrolet Malibu, nominated for North American Car of the Year in the United States.

A new engine mounting system from ContiTech includes polyamide components. They enable a weight reduction of around 20% compared with previous components.

The significant increase in high-technology polyamide elements has resulted in a weight reduction of around 20% in the mount components. “This development shows very clearly that the lightweight construction trend is becoming increasingly significant for the U.S. market, as well, and that polyamide components have finally arrived in mid-size cars too,” says Scott Bykowski, head of Development for North America at ContiTech Vibration Control.

For the current vehicle models, ContiTech will supply a total of three engine mounts and their attachments. These include engine and transmission mounts, which combine to support the drive unit and hydraulically dampen vibrations, and a torque rod support, which absorbs torque.

A particular challenge in the development of the new components lay in the nature of the newly developed 1.5-liter engine—its smaller size means that, conversely, the engine mounts have become considerably larger. To reduce the weight at the same time, ContiTech developed a completely new design. “We were able to replace all the internal components with much lighter polyamide versions,” explains Florian Reinke, developer at ContiTech Vibration Control. “Only one steel component has been retained, and the crash-relevant parts are still made of aluminum because of the limited installation space.”

Another benefit: Changing to polyamide has also opened up many more options for the designers. It was possible to make the components more detailed, smoother and, therefore, more streamlined, enabling greater functional efficiency.

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