LG Chem's lightweight plastic material used as exterior part of Mitsubishi vehicles

By Kim Joo-heon Posted : January 10, 2023, 16:16 Updated : January 10, 2023, 16:16

[Courtesy of LG Chem]

SEOUL -- A lightweight plastic component developed by LG Chem, the chemical unit of South Korea's LG Group, was used as an exterior part of vehicles made by Mitsubishi Motors, one of Japan's largest car makers. The new material which is about 8.8 pounds lighter than steel material can improve fuel efficiency and reduce carbon emissions.
The plastic material called "LUCON TX5007" was used in the front fender of Mitsubishi Motors. Front fenders located on the side of vehicles are used to protect wheels from various types of road debris. Electrically conductive paints are necessary when coloring the exterior part of a car. Front fenders should be capable of withstanding the high-temperature paint-drying process.
LG Chem said in a statement on January 10 that LUCON TX5007 capable of withstanding paint drying processes of more than 200 degrees Celsius (392 Fahrenheit) was adopted for the front fenders of three types of Mitsubishi vehicles. The plastic material was created by combining polyphenylene ether materials with polyamide materials. Carbon nanotubes that enable electric conductivity were also applied.
LG's plastic fenders are about 8.8 pounds lighter than steel of the same size, reducing the weight of a vehicle. The company said the lightweight features can increase fuel efficiency and reduce auto emissions. According to LG, the plastic material can be applied to other exterior parts such as bumpers, side-view mirrors and trunks.
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