Automotive Lightweight

Lightweight special: Everything covered

Eliminating a few kilograms in the right places can mean big CO2 savings for car manufacturers. And if a lightweight part can also offer additional advantages beyond its low weight, even better! The cargo cover from Freudenberg Performance Materials (FPM) is an innovative example. Dr. Alen Nosic, Global Strategic Business Unit Manager Automotive, explains what sets the FPM solution apart from the competition.

Cargo Covers

Cargo covers have been around for a long time. What makes the FPM solution special?

The weight. There is no material that can match it for lightness. The larger the area to be covered, the more weight, and therefore CO2, is saved.

OK. What is it made of?

We use a special polyester nonwoven. More precisely: A needle-punched nonwoven, which we treat with various methods to satisfy the requirements placed on a cargo cover.

Further lightweight solutions made of exclusive materials are underbody panelings and noise suppressors.

And how much weight does a customer save with this innovation compared with PVC?

That depends. If we replace PVC with a nonwoven, it can easily amount to 450 grams per square meter of material. For a 1 to 1.5 square-meter cargo cover in the car, that's almost a kilogram.

But that isn’t the only advantage, right?

No, there are more. For health reasons, car manufacturers are increasingly avoiding the use of PVC. Cargo covers made of this material emit vapors, so-called volatile organic compounds. In other words, substances that transition from solid to gaseous state at about 50 °C. Park a car in the sun, and these gases can form. Our nonwoven, however, does not produce such emissions. And by the way, it is also cold-resistant.

Cargo Cover
Cargo Covers

Four reasons for choosing the cargo cover from FPM

  • Lightest solution on the market
  • No emission of volatile organic compounds
  • Cold-resistant
  • Excellent cost-benefit ratio

Meaning what?

Even at -10 or -20 °C, the material does not freeze. Yet that's exactly what happens with many covers made of PVC or other materials. Then they can no longer be rolled out.

Is the cargo cover already in use?

Yes. An Asian car manufacturer is already using it. They've already had good experiences with our performance material, which can be found in the headliners of many models, among other places. For the cargo cover, the developers approached us and asked for an alternative to PVC. Together, we developed the ideal solution and even jointly patented it.


Further Topics in the Lightweight Special

Lightweight special: The underbody

For the automotive industry, lightweight construction is clearly the way of the future. Motivated by ever stricter emissions standards in many international car markets, manufacturers must make their products leaner.

Read more

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Cargo Covers

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