Toyota’s Manager of Materials Division Wins Lifetime Achievement Award

03 August 2005

Mr. Shigeki Suzuki, general manager of the Materials Engineering Division of Toyota Motor Corporation in Japan, is this year's Lifetime Achievement Award winner for the SPE Automotive Division's 35th-annual Innovation Awards Gala.

Mr. Suzuki has developed and/or managed development of new polymeric materials for automotive applications throughout his career and will receive his award on November 16th at Burton Manor in Livonia, Michigan

The Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes the technical achievements of automotive industry executives whose work (in research, design, engineering, etc.) has led to significant integration of polymeric materials in vehicles. Past winners of the award include J.T. Battenberg III, chairman and CEO of Delphi; Bernard Robertson, executive vice-president of DaimlerChrysler; Robert Schaad, chairman of Husky; and Tom Moore, retired vice-president, Liberty and Technical Affairs at DaimlerChrysler. Mr. Suzuki was selected as this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award because of his extensive involvement in developing or managing development of a wide variety of polymeric materials for passenger vehicles at Toyota. Applications he was directly involved in developing include:

A glass-reinforced composite patch to reinforce a steel door panel on the Soarer passenger vehicle in 1982.
A sheet composite pre-preg seat with an adhesive for oily surfaces in 1983 for the Corolla passenger car.
A highly filled foam noise-suppression material for pillars on the Crown passenger vehicle in 1987.
A structural adhesive tape pre-form for the 1988 Mark II® passenger vehicle.
A structural adhesive for the aluminum hood of the 1993 Supra® sports car.

Additionally, Mr. Suzuki managed resources that developed the following materials:
Fiberglass-reinforced plastic (FRP) top cover for the 1984 Hylux® passenger vehicle.
High-productivity, water-based paints for the 1996 Camry® passenger car.
A bio-plastic (produced from plants not oil) for the 2003 Raum® passenger vehicle.
Plus 5 generations of Toyota super olefin polymer (TSOP) for various interior and exterior components.

SPE’s Innovation Awards Gala is the largest competition of its kind in the world. Dozens of teams made up of OEMs, tier suppliers, and polymer producers submit nominations describing their part, system, or complete vehicle module and why it merits the claim as Year’s Most Innovative Use of Plastics. The mission of SPE International is to promote scientific and engineering knowledge relating to plastics worldwide and to educate industry, academia, and the public about these advances.

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