Volvo uses carbon fiber-reinforced polymer in Polestar 1

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One of the key components in creating a responsive and agile driving experience in the new Polestar 1 is the extensive use of carbon fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP).

Enabling an overall weight saving of 230kg, most of the main body parts are constructed from the high-tech and lightweight material, making it a core contributor to the dynamic handling of the Polestar 1.

This project represents the first time that the Volvo Car Group has explored the application of carbon fiber in vehicles. The Polestar Production Centre, which is currently under construction and due to begin full-scale production in mid-2019, is being tooled to deal with the intricate work.

Components made from the material have been used extensively in the car’s structure, including the hood, trunk lid, side panels, doors and the entire roof structure. “The ‘dragonfly’ is also made from CFRP,” said Christian Samson, head of product creation at Polestar.

The dragonfly-shaped component plays an instrumental role in creating the Polestar 1’s reactive dynamics – it radically improves torsional stiffness at one of the critical points in the body structure, between the middle of the floor and rear construction.

“When you combine this strengthened framework with the super-strong body and roof structure, you get a stiff and communicative chassis which translates driver input into superb driving characteristics,” continued Samson.

There are significant design benefits as well. The carbon-fiber roof structure is not only thinner and stronger than a steel equivalent but also enables a much lower roof line, resulting in a sleek and slender profile.

A glass panel stretches the length and width of the roof, integrated with minimal intrusion from body elements on the inside for a truly panoramic view.

Thomas Ingenlath, CEO at Polestar, concluded, “Carbon fiber is crucial in meeting our design, engineering and performance goals with the Polestar 1. The result is a beautiful, technological package that remains faithful to the original design with its elegant and low silhouette. It looks as good as it is to drive.”

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Rachel's career in journalism began around five years ago when she started working for UKi Media & Events, having recently graduated from Coventry University where she studied the subject. Her favourite aspect of the job is interviewing industry experts, including researchers, scientists, engineers and technicians, and learning more about the groundbreaking technologies and innovations that are shaping the future of the automotive and tire industries.

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