BERGEN OP ZOOM, The Netherlands, November 20, 2012 – Ambient lighting is a growing trend in automotive interior design, enhancing consumer appeal. So when Chrysler Group LLC designed the 2013 Dodge Dart compact for young, style-conscious car buyers, the automaker turned to SABIC’s Innovative Plastics business to help create stylish interior lighting at an affordable cost.
In collaboration with Chrysler Group and Mitchell Plastics, SABIC contributed advanced materials and design and development expertise for the unique eye-catching ambient lighting design that surrounds the innovative floating island bezel, which houses the instrument cluster and Uconnect mediacenter. The floating island bezel is the centerpiece of the all-new Dodge Dart interior. SABIC’s high-performance CYCOLOY™ and GELOY™ resins with molded-in color enabled Chrysler to achieve the Dart’s next-generation interior, which epitomizes the latest in vehicle design innovation.
This successful project with Chrysler demonstrates the design-enabling power of SABIC’s automotive resins and the company’s ability to collaborate and support its customers throughout the development process – from concept feasibility to production. The floating island bezel is highlighted by a piano black surface accented by ambient lighting at the edge of the bezel; compliments of light emitting diode (LED) light piping in a soft ruby red glow to create a distinctive floating appearance.
SABIC CYCOLOY polycarbonate/acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (PC/ABS) resin and a polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) are two-shot injection molded by Mitchell Plastics to form the floating island bezel lens, and custom-colored SABIC GELOY acrylic-styrene-acrylonitrile (ASA) resin is injection molded to create the accent edging. Mitchell Plastics, based in Ontario, Canada, is one of the recipients of Chrysler Group’s 2012 Supplier of the Year awards.
“This project was a great opportunity to expand our ongoing relationships with Chrysler Group and Mitchell Plastics, while also contributing to the execution of an interior design that has received such high critical acclaim,” said V. Umamaheswaran (UV), director of marketing, Automotive, Innovative Plastics. “We are pleased to have assisted in the design and production of this breakthrough ambient lighting solution, which promises to attract plenty of attention from potential customers.”
High Performance, Design Flexibility
SABIC’s materials featuring molded-in color can help reduce system costs while providing rich aesthetics. By avoiding the costs of secondary painting operations, molded-in color can save an estimated $1 to $3 per part. In addition, a paint-free approach supports sustainability by eliminating the release of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the atmosphere.
SABIC engineers worked with Chrysler and Mitchell Plastics throughout the full gamut of product development functions to bring the application to fruition. The SABIC team first worked on the concept feasibility with designers and engineers at Chrysler, then with the team at Mitchell for final design, material selection and production supply. In addition to the floating island bezel, SABIC materials were used in the forward and rear/signal exterior lighting, front grilles, exterior trim and tank flap of the 2013 Dodge Dart.