Auto design house, composites supplier combine forces to develop lightweight vehicles


Toray Industries, Inc. (Tokyo) concluded a technical partnership agreement with Gordon Murray Design Limited (GMD; Shalford, U.K.) on the side-lines of the 42nd Tokyo Motor Show 2011 aimed at promoting GMD's iStream hybrid production process in vehicle manufacture and other industrial sectors.

Previously, GMD designed Toray's Teewave AR1 (Toray Eco Efficient Wave Advanced Roadster 1) all-composite vehicle, which was unveiled in September last year. The two-seater electric vehicle weighs in at 846 kg including the battery. I its basic structure comprises a resin transfer molded (RTM) monocoque made of thermoset CFRP combined with CFRP shock absorbers to achieve superior stiffness as well as crash safety. It also adopts thermoplastic CFRP for the bonnet, hatch and roof, which are molded in cycle time of one minute compared with 10 minutes for the thermoset CFRP components.
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