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As the pioneer of composite automotive component suppliers in China, CSP VICTALL announces that Jiangling Motors Corporation (JMC) will use advanced composites for the pickup boxes of its new Yuhu 3 and Yuhu 5 pickup trucks, the first such use of composites in the Chinese automotive industry.
The composite box developed by CSP VICTALL has solved the issues of heavy weight, low corrosion resistance and high cost for pickup boxes traditionally made of sheet metal.
The collaboration project between two companies started in 2017. The R&D team of CSP VICTALL provided comprehensive solutions for JMC in raw material development, manufacturing processes and product design. With its success in developing similar products in the North American market, Continental Structural Plastics, the parent company of CSP VICTALL, also provided support for the project. The innovative composite product uses integrated sheet moulding compound (SMC) that is moulded into the desired geometry in just one step, significantly reducing the production cycle and the number of moulds required.
“In materials engineering, shaving a single kilogram per car is a significant accomplishment,” said Mr. Ding Zhiyong, Chief Technical Officer of Auto Body at JMC, “Now the new Yuhu SMC pickup box is 30% lighter than a sheet metal pickup box in the same configuration. This is far ahead of our competition in China. JMC is always looking for innovation opportunities in new material development. We believe the collaboration with CSP VICTALL will benefit our customers by letting them actually experience the performance improvement generated by the weight reduction achieved by using the innovative SMC pickup box.”
To produce its proprietary sheet moulded compound, CSP VICTALL uses a fully automated compounding line that accurately controls the ratio of different raw materials like high-strength resin and glass fibre in its patented formula. SMC sheets produced from this formula are made into pickup boxes through a process that includes the material being robotically loaded into a mould, vacuum-assisted compression moulding in a 4,300 ton press, and cooling. This advanced manufacturing process meets the high-efficiency and quality requirements of automotive OEMs.
A pickup box made from composites offers significant benefits over a box made from metals. These benefits include lower weight, resistance to corrosion and high impact strength. After impact testing with a toolbox, a gas barrel and bricks, CSP VICTALL’s composite pickup box did not show any of the damage that a conventional sheet metal box would.
“Our SMC project with JMC will set a benchmark for the industry and generate positive feedback in the market,” said Mr. Song Changjiang, General Manager of CSP VICTALL. “Compared to traditional sheet metal pickup boxes, SMC boxes are easier to mould, have more complex shapes and are more cost-effective. They will be well received by domestic automobile OEMs for their supremacy in vehicle weight reduction.”
Composite pickup boxes are recognised in the North American market for advantages in areas such as cost reduction and impact resistance. CSP has been supplying composite pickup boxes for the Toyota Tacoma and Honda Ridgeline for many years. CSP VICTALL will call upon CSP’s experience from the North American market to better serve its customers in China.
Image provided by CSP VICTALL
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