In the wake of the diesel vehicle emissions scandal, electric and hybrid electric vehicles are sure to make further inroads in the market, especially in Europe, where diesel-fueled vehicles account for around 35% of the fleet. So BASF's announcement that it is expanding its range of engineering plastics for the dynamic EV and HEV market couldn't be more timely.
Tailor-made Ultramid polyamide (PA) and Ultradur polybutylene terephthalate (PBT) materials are now available globally for equipping vehicle interior and exterior high-voltage plug-in connectors with precisely fitting characteristics. The special PA and PBT grades reportedly meet the demands on flame retardancy, color stability, mechanics and electrical isolation. They therefore allow automotive manufacturers to save on weight and installation space around the battery and at the same time help to improve safety in e-mobility.
One example is the connectors for hybrid and electric vehicles which TE Connectivity (Schaffhausen, Switzerland) has developed from various Ultramid PS grades for numerous automotive companies in close collaboration with BASF. "Components for battery-powered vehicles are evolving all the time, and each automotive manufacturer has special requirements", says Wolfgang Balles, responsible at TE Connectivity for product development hybrid and electric mobility. Franz Janson, head of Global Resin Material Platform at TE, adds: "That is why for us, as a company that operates globally, it is vital to have a cooperation partner like BASF with which we can find the ideal combination of material and part. This is the only way that we can deliver safe and reliable components to the mass market."