AUBURN HILLS, Mich.—Continental Structural Plastics (CSP) and its parent company, Teijin, received the 2019 Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) Innovation Award, Body Exterior Category, as well as the overall Grand Award, for the carbon fiber pickup box used in the 2019 GMC Sierra Denali CarbonPro edition.
The carbon fiber pickup box, branded CarbonPro® by the customer, is the industry’s first commercial application of the material Sereebo®, a proprietary, carbon-fiber nylon thermoplastic material that is fully recyclable. Reported to provide best-in-class dent, scratch, and corrosion resistance, the CarbonPro box saves 62 pounds over a steel box. Its durability eliminates the need for a bed liner, saving an additional 40 pounds of mass.
Continental Structural Plastics said in a press release that the advanced manufacturing techniques used to mold Sereebo into the CarbonPro box are the first mass production technologies developed for carbon fiber reinforced thermoplastics suitable for high-volume programs.
“It is an honor to receive this top innovation award from SPE,” said Steve Rooney, CEO, Continental Structural Plastics, in the release. “We are committed to leading the way for vehicle light-weighting with innovations in composite and carbon fiber formulations and component design. The CarbonPro box is an example of what can be accomplished when great teams come together to collaborate on materials and design to create something entirely new in the automotive industry.”
The CarbonPro box is the result of a long-term collaboration between General Motors, Teijin, and Continental Structural Plastics. The product earned the GM engineering team the company’s prestigious Boss Kettering award, GM’s highest award for innovation, in April 2019.
Last May, CSP received the GM Innovation Award, which recognizes supplier innovation. In July 2019, it was named a runner up in the 2019 Altair Enlighten Awards, and it received “Most Innovative Composite Part” at SPE’s ACCE conference in September 2018. It also received the CAMX Unsurpassed Innovation Award, and has been named a finalist in the 2020 Automotive News PACE Awards.
Continental Structural Plastics (www.cspplastics.com), a Teijin Group company, is headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan. The company provides full-service engineering support and holds multiple patents covering materials development and manufacturing processes.