PLEXIGLAS® molding compounds ensure the taillights of the DS 4 shine like diamonds which last forever
- Marelli Automotive Lighting manufactures taillights for the premium hatchback from DS Automobiles using laser welding and the brand PMMA from Röhm
- PLEXIGLAS® provides both aesthetic and functional properties to guarantee an emotional product design
- Material for contemporary automobile design that saves resources
The unusual taillight clusters of the imposing DS 4 hatchback – the latest model from the French premium brand, DS Automobiles – are reminiscent of a sparkling jewel. Vehicles from DS Automobiles are easily recognizable from a distance thanks to their unique signature lights. “The metalized design of our taillights is inspired by nature and is reminiscent of the shining scales of a fish, while it also draws from symbols of luxury, such as polished diamonds, or the famous glass pyramid in front of the Louvre in Paris,” explains Nicolas Deluy, Head of Design Lighting & Exterior Design Components at DS Automobiles.
High-quality material for an emotional design
The shimmer of the taillight covers sets the perfect scene for the light design. Supplier Marelli Automotive Lighting manufactured the cover using a crystal-clear PLEXIGLAS® molding compound, which was then framed by a black gloss contour made from PLEXIGLAS® Hi-Gloss 8N black. This interplay completes the high-quality overall look of the taillights. “With its light-guiding and aesthetic properties, our brand PMMA can be used to create emotional product design. The taillights of the DS 4 are a particularly good example of this,” says Siamak Djafarian, Head of the Molding Compounds Business Unit at Röhm GmbH.
One special feature helps the DS 4 taillights stand out from those of other models in the DS line-up: For the first time, the cover is not a level surface, but is instead modeled like a sculpture. “As such, the taillight covers continue the dynamic lines and proportions of the avant-garde exterior design, like an extension of the body,” explains Deluy. PLEXIGLAS® molding compounds are ideal for injection molding such large and three-dimensional components. The balanced property profile and the advancements in lighting technology mean this product opens up almost infinite options for both exterior and lighting design. However, this new-found freedom of design also means vehicle lighting manufacturers face new challenges.
“PLEXIGLAS® is sustainable by design and helps save resources in automobile design.”
Suitable PLEXIGLAS® molding compounds for laser welding
The trend toward spectacular signature lights in the premium sector requires different processing techniques. For the DS 4 taillights, Marelli joined the cover and the housing using a laser welding process. In light of the complexity of the component, designing the welding ribs was a challenge, particularly on the lateral side, explains Arnaud Mouchon, Head of Research and Development at Marelli Automotive Lighting France: “Had we used another process, such as vibration welding, we would not have been able to work precisely enough here,” says Mouchon. Laser welding means it is possible to minimize the gap between trunk and taillights. “Of course, this requires materials that enable laser beams to pass through,” explains Mouchon. PLEXIGLAS® Hi-Gloss 8N black 90114 meets this requirement, while also providing a good heat deflection temperature, flow capability and melt viscosity. The high-gloss black contour made from this molding compound elegantly hides the weld seam and guarantees a smooth transition.
PLEXIGLAS® saves resources in automobile construction
Good design is also characterized by sustainability. According to DS Automobiles, 95 percent of the DS 4 is made from reusable materials, while 30 percent of its weight is from renewable or recycled materials, divided between metals and polymers.
“PLEXIGLAS® is sustainable by design and helps save resources in automobile design,” says Sven Schröbel, Head of Global Sustainability Management in the Molding Compounds Business Unit. The brand PMMA from Röhm is a high-quality, durable and fully recyclable plastic that is UV and weather resistant in the long term, ensuring it retains its functional and aesthetic properties throughout the entire life of the vehicle. This longevity is particularly relevant when it comes to light covers. The permanent transparency and unsurpassed light transmission inherent to colorless PLEXIGLAS® molding compounds not only guarantee that the light signals are highly visible, but also reduce the energy requirements of the LEDs.
With 3,500 employees and 13 production sites worldwide, Röhm is one of the leading manufacturers in the methacrylate business. The medium-sized company with branches in Germany, China, the USA, Mexico, and South Africa has more than 80 years of experience in methacrylate chemistry and a strong technology platform. Our best-known brands include PLEXIGLAS®, ACRYLITE®, MERACRYL®, DEGALAN®, DEGAROUTE® and CYROLITE®.
Polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) products from Röhm are sold on the European, Asian, African and Australian continent under the registered trademarks PLEXIGLAS® and PLEXIMID®, in the Americas under the registered trademarks ACRYLITE® and ACRYMID®.
About DS 4 and DS Automobiles
The DS 4 is the fourth independent model from young Paris-based premium brand DS Automobiles. Designed in Paris and produced in Rüsselsheim, the premium compact model combines luxury savoir-faire with German precision. DS Automobiles was founded in Paris in 2015 and breathes new life into the tradition of French premium automobiles.
Find out more: www.DSAutomobiles.de.