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The new RVR compact crossover from Mitsubishi Motors Corp. sports a front fenders molded from Noryl GTX resin supplied by SABIC Innovative Plastics (Pittsfield, MA). This is the second time that polyamide (PA) and modified polyphenylene ether polymer (PPE) blend has scored success in a fender application following the Delica D:5 minivan in 2007.

July 31, 2010

2 Min Read
PPE/PA blend cuts carbon emissions, is pedestrian friendly

The new RVR compact crossover from Mitsubishi Motors Corp. sports a front fenders molded from Noryl GTX resin supplied by SABIC Innovative Plastics (Pittsfield, MA). This is the second time that polyamide (PA) and modified polyphenylene ether polymer (PPE) blend has scored success in a fender application following the Delica D:5 minivan in 2007.

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Pedestrian safety boosted with plastic fender.

By replacing steel with Noryl GTX, Mitsubishi slashed fender weight by almost 50% and achieved a unique and highly complex geometry to differentiate the new vehicle's styling and improve pedestrian safety compliance.

"The new RVR's front fenders mark another major milestone for SABIC Innovative Plastics' Noryl GTX resin, which is rapidly becoming the material of choice not only in fenders, but in an ever-broadening range of auto body components, as well," says Gregory A. Adams, VP, automotive, SABIC Innovative Plastics. "This win with Mitsubishi is very significant in that it is the first time an Asian automaker has reprised its use of Noryl GTX resin."

Noryl GTX resin has made a major contribution by reducing vehicle body weight by 3 kg. Mitsubishi has already announced that it will introduce this new environmentally responsible vehicle, branded as the Mitsubishi ASX, to the European market later this year, and will follow with expansion into many other regions of the world.

According to sustainable strategy consultant GreenOrder (New York, NY), because Noryl GTX is 50% lighter than steel, equipping all cars on the road today in Europe with fenders made from it would save 530 million liters of fuel and avoid 1.3 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions over the lifetime of the cars.

The material also provides greater design freedom than metal. Through injection molding, Mitsubishi designers were able to create a complex fender geometry featuring a sharp front edge and a side slot for an indicator lamp. Such a design would have been difficult to fabricate in steel as it would require multiple steps, tools, and operations.

The SABIC Innovative Plastics resin also enabled Mitsubishi designers and engineers to significantly increase the fender's flexibility versus that of steel. This enhanced flexibility is expected to provide excellent head-on impact absorption in pedestrian incidents, as well as recovery of the fender from minor collisions. —[email protected]

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