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DSM in Automotive

Reducing weight in the oil sump: Case study

Achieving metal replacement in the oil system is nothing new – as Mercedes and our tier 1 customer BBP Kunststoffwerk Marbach Baier have proved. The new Mercedes S-Class features a breakthrough oil sump made from our unique Akulon® Ultraflow polyamide 6: It weighs 50% less than its metal equivalent while meeting every performance criteria.
Person holding an plastic oil sump made of Akulon Ultraflow

Our research team worked closely with BBP in Germany, subjecting the Akulon Ultraflow oil sump to a battery of demanding application tests, including vibration, stone impact, and an engine drop test.

The oil sump withstood everything, and is now in production – which itself has improved thanks to the high-flow of Akulon Ultraflow: Its faster flow equates to faster cycle times and less warpage; and because the material enables thinner wall thicknesses this means less material is needed – while giving more freedom to engineers.

Next generation oil sump systems

And this is just the beginning for this high performance powertrain component. In the coming years we expect to see the introduction of a hybrid oil pan integrated with the structurally loaded bed plate that carries loads from the transmission system…and we anticipate the entire module will be made entirely of thermoplastic parts, joined together using vibration welding techniques. 

Bright science in action…