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Airtech

New Luxury Car Is Dressed in SMC

15 October 2003

The new Cadillac XLR is combining the nameplate’s legendary luxury with the experience of a high performance roadster. The vehicle’s composite hood is compression-molded of sheet molding composite (SMC) by Tier One supplier ThyssenKrupp Budd Company.

The matrices of ThyssenKrupp Budd proprietary SMCs are based on resin systems from AOC, the leader in North American automotive composite resins. “Because nothing reflects the style and prestige of a vehicle like the hood, it is especially gratifying to work with ThyssenKrupp Budd to develop the material for a Cadillac hood,” says Mike Dettre, Business Manager - Closed Mold for AOC.

“In addition to its ability to create high style, SMC is specified because it lowers vehicle weight, reduces tooling costs, and resists corrosion and denting.” The Cadillac XLR hood assembly includes a complex-shaped, non-appearance SMC inner panel that is bonded to an SMC outer panel with a Class A finish. The hood surface has a four-sided, tapered design and includes steel hinges, brackets and the hood latch.






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