Fleet News

WMG to develop lightweight vehicle technology

The Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG), part of the University of Warwick, will contribute to the development of lightweight vehicle structures, in a bid to reduce CO2 emissions.

Working as part of a new research project called Tucana, WMG experts will help with the research and development of lightweight vehicle structures using scalable carbon fibre composites.

The CO2 benefit of the project between 2023-2032, will be 4.5 million tonnes.

As part of the project WMG will manufacture the carbon fibre components, in its new Materials Engineering Centre which will has dedicated facilities for composite and hybrid structures. To gather the material optimisation and characterisation WMG experts, led by Professor Ken Kendall, will trial the manufactured materials on their newly installed composite materials processing equipment (which received £1.3m funding from the WMG centre High Value Manufacturing Catapult).

The Government has invested £18.7 million into light weighting projects and WMG will receive £4m.

Tucana, brings together a consortium of world-leading academic and industry partners. Led by Jaguar Land Rover, other partners in the project are Expert Tooling & Automation Limited, Broetje-Automation UK Ltd, Toray International U.K. Limited, CCP Gransden Lltd, and Magna Exteriors (Banbury) Limited.

Professor Lord Bhattacharyya, chairman and founder of WMG, said: “It is vital that research and development, in the automotive sector, supports the UK’s Industrial Strategy and the move towards increasing the number of electric vehicles.  I am delighted that WMG’s contribution to the project will help in establishing a world class UK supply chain for materials and manufacture for the lightweighting of vehicles.”

Professor Dr. Gero Kempf, chief engineer at Jaguar Land Rover, added: “With the grant awarded to Project Tucana, we can take an industry leading role in the development of next generation technologies specifically, lightweight body structures. Together with industry experts and academia we will collaboratively deliver innovative carbon fibre solutions, achieving a performance that will further enhance driver experience for future premium electric vehicles.” 

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