Mazda Motor and Japan Polypropylene have come up with the idea of creating a new resin material for vehicle parts, which will have the same rigidity as the ones made of conventional materials, but will be lighter and thinner.
The technology, which enables 20% weight savings in polypropylene (PP), will be applied in the front and rear bumpers of the Mazda CX-5 SUV set to debut this spring, as well as other models. PP and rubber impact modifying components of differing molecular weight were combined to create a material to be successfully distributed them in a double-layer structure. The lower molecular weight part of the material has higher flow and forms the surface layer of the bumper, also featuring good paint film adhesion properties. On the other hand, the higher molecular weight portion forms the high impact, high rigidity core layer.
By using computer-aided engineering (CAE) technology, the fluidity of the resign has been optimized, the molding time reduced from 60 seconds to 30 seconds and also the cycle time. Using this material Mazda will produce the lightest bumpers for the new Mazda CX-5 SUV, which will go on sale this spring.