Tailor-made plastics for a long-lasting, solid and weather-resistant automotive exterior
From headlamp housings via door handles to the roof – BASF´s Engineering Plastics and Polyurethanes are the right choice for all exterior applications where the right combination of lightweight, appearance, functionality and design freedom is needed. BASF´s plastics portfolio covers a wide range of materials for the automotive exterior: Elastolit® R and COLO-FAST® R are Polyurethane systems for flat and complex shaped components like glass roofs, body panels and structural components. The Engineering Plastics Ultradur® and Ultramid® as well as the Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU) Elastollan® enable long-lasting components that are UV and weather resistant, withstand high temperatures and show attractive design. Cellasto® improves the noise, vibration and harshness performance of the vehicle and brings the automotive comfort to the next level. Our EPP foam Neopolen® is the ideal material when it comes to energy absorption for safe driving.
Versatile applications for the automotive exterior
Whatever your specific exterior needs are: BASF connects new material developments and services to create system solutions which give your exterior application the distinctive advantage, look, performance and durability.
Materials used for lighting systems, show an excellent surface as well as fogging behavior. Within its Polybutylene terephthalate portfolio, BASF offers several grades for these purposes: With Ultradur® B 4560 bezels can be directly metallized. Ultradur® HGL IV are premium PBT grades with excellent fogging behavior and demolding properties. Parts made of Ultradur® S4090 G4 can show a textured surface or metallic effects. For structural frames of LED modules, Ultradur® B4040 G10 ist the PBT of choice.
The aromatic Elastolit® R 8919 and the aliphatic COLO-FAST® R 8959 are two component RIM-systems for automotive glass encapsulations providing high-quality surfaces with tailored UV- and weather-resistance. Its outstanding resin flowability enables the encapsulation of large glass panes with a high degree of design freedom in shape, thickness and geometry. The perfect adhesion of these systems to treated glass surfaced and inserts (metals and plastics) supports the integration of various functions and the reduction of process steps.
For door parts like handles, latches or brackets as well as structural stiffeners and locking mechanisms inside the door, UV-stability and a good, long-lasting surface quality are as important as stiffness and strength. The Ultramid® grade B3GM35 is the material of choice when it comes to UV-stable door handles – painted or unpainted. Ultramid® B3WG6 GIT shows excellent surface quality and is also optimized for high flowability and good paintability.
For mirror parts like brackets, shells and bases requiring high strength and stiffness, the highly filled PBT grade Ultradur® B4040 G10 is a perfect match. It shows a good surface quality for sliding parts and like Ultramid® B3WG13 HPX and Ultramid® D3WG12 HMG, it can replace metal in these exterior applications.
Due to their outstanding flowability, the hard and tough-elastic Elastolit® R as well as the high-strength Elastolit® K systems, tailor-made to produce body panels via the RRIM process, permit even the most challenging designs. The components pair their superlative quality with low weight. They can be readily painted thanks to their Class A surface. Their excellent price/performance ratio contributes significantly to the success of small-series components in cars and commercial vehicles.
For roof frames and roofracks accurate shaping is as important as very good UV-stability, superior surface finish, dimensional stability and high stiffness. To meet these requirements BASF offers Ultradur® S4090 G4 and Ultradur® B4040 with different glass fiber contents characterized by a good flowability. There are optimized grades for visible or non-visible sunroof frames, covers as well as for wind deflectors.
Detailed material information for car exterior solutions
Our versatile PU systems for the automotive exterior
With their versatile properties and unlimited applications possibilities, our PU systems can make the automotive exterior safer, lighter and more robust. BASF Polyurethanes can be adjusted to many different densities, they can be flexible or stiff and they are resistant to hot and cold temperatures.
Elastolit® R and COLO-FAST® R are compact systems with exceptional flowability for large and complex components like automotive sun- or panorama roofs, body panels or structural parts. Typically, they are processed in closed injection processes like RIM (reaction injection molding) and RTM (resin transfer molding). These materials are adjusted to high reactivity and therefore allow very short demolding times. Depending on the part requirements, they can be either tough-elastic or rigid with high-strength. The latter are often combined with reinforcing short fibers to achieve special properties. High-quality parts with a UV- and weather-resistant surface can be obtained, but even paintability to achieve Class A surface requirements is given.
Learn more about Elastolit®
The low-density Elastoflex® E and Elastolit® D semi-structural foams are designed for producing very light and stiff composite as well as sandwich structures for various interior and exterior applications such as load floors, interior lining parts, roof modules and engine hoods. Reinforced with long-glass fibers in state-of-the-art composite processes, thin-walled parts with good mechanical properties and light in weight can be realized. Such composite substrates can be combined with various surface materials like textiles or thermoplastic films, either by back-foaming or adhering.
Where conventional materials reach their limits, Elastollan® can make all the difference. It is famous for its excellent haptics and mechanics, as well as its superior long-term durability and resistance to weathering. It gives freedom for a lot of design possibilities. Its strength lies in its versatility: the properties of Elastollan® can be readjusted and recombined time and again – depending on the application and the specific requirements of the component. For example, it shows high temperature as well as good media resistance and has superior dynamic properties. Its damping behavior is excellent as it is resistance against abrasion, scratch and wear.
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» Engineering Plastics
Engineering Plastics for the automotive exterior
The engineering plastics Ultramid® and Ultradur® combine strength and stiffness with good UV-stability, resistance to agressive media and good surface quality especially for different kinds of attached parts and their special requirements.
The Ultramid® grades B3WG6 GIT and B3GM35 are the materials of choice for exterior door handles when excellent surface quality and mechanical performance are required. Ultramid® B3GM35 is a coloured, UV-stabilized compound which fulfills several OEM specifications for exterior purposes. Ultramid® B3WG6 GIT is also optimized for high flowability and good paintability.
Learn more about Ultramid®
Lighting bezels made of Ultradur® S4090 G4/G6 can show a textured surface or metallic effects. They are also the material of choice for perfectly fitting headlamp and foglamp housings.
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BASF offers Ultradur® S4090 G4 and Ultradur® B4040 with different glass fiber contents and with good flowability for exterior roof parts. There are different grades for visible as well as non-visible sunroof frames and covers as well as for wind deflectors.
Learn more about Ultradur®
Ultradur® B4040 G10 is a high-strength and high-stiffness PBT for replacing metal conventionally used as base or bracket of exterior mirrors as well as for LED module frames within modern headlamps.
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The Ultrason® resins are amorphous thermoplastics derived from polyethersulfone (PESU), polysulfone (PSU) and polyphenylsulfone (PPSU). They offer very high thermal and excellent chemical resistance. Applications always keep stiffness and dimensional stability even when used at very high temperatures or under challenging conditions. Its wide spectrum of properties allows Ultrason® to be molded into high-quality parts with a long service life.
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» Specialty Elastomers
Neopolen® (EPP) for components subject to impact stress
The low weight, high energy absorption and good deformation performance of Neopolen®, even after repeated impact loads, are outstanding qualities for components in automotive construction. Neopolen® also shows negligible water absorption, can be relied upon to function over a wide temperature range and is thus ideally suited for exterior automotive applications.