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Innovation awards Body Exterior Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV for the thermoplastic liftgate on the 2019 Jeep Cherokee. The thermoplastic liftgate replaces the

steel design and enables a 28% mass reduction in addition to a 50% tooling and capital investment savings. The automaker said it is

an industry-ďŹ rst use of conformal infrared welding behind the moulded-in-colour grain Class A surface.

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Ford Motor Co for a 3D printed venting insert on the 2019 Ranger pickup. To improve venting, the 3D printed insert is designed with integrated venting channels that allow gas to escape into the atmosphere. Ford said manufacturing time is reduced by 70% for the 3D-printed part compared with steel. The design also eliminates the need for a separate grille.

Ford Motor Co for a 3D-printed lift assist used in assembly for the 2018 Escape SUV and Fusion sedan. The updated lift assist, which carries anything from a half shaft to an instrument panel, has a 100kg weight savings over a traditional steel welded or machined lift assist. Ford said the 3D-printed version also costs 50% less to manufacture.

Profile for SA Plastics, Composites & Rubber

Southern African Polymer Technology  

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