Schwalbach, Germany - April 16, 2018 - Dow Automotive's structural and glass bonding expertise played a critical role in the design and development by the LEVC (London EV Company) of its new range-extended electric TX taxis. The new taxis began carrying fare-paying passengers earlier this year.
Dow’s structural adhesives, bonding and sealing solutions were critical in accommodating the design requirements for the taxi’s new lightweight aluminum body structure. “Dow’s high performance solutions contributed to achieving a lightweight bonded extruded aluminium monocoque body-in-white and also eliminated the need for mechanical fasteners,” said Christophe Van Herreweghe, Marketing Manager, Adhesives at Dow. “The result is a fully-bonded body structure that is stronger and significantly lighter than an equivalent steel construction. In addition to increased safety for the occupants, the weight savings can also contribute to greater autonomy when in electric mode.”
The adhesive selection and application design of the new vehicles was guided by Antala, a technical and chemical specialist and a longstanding Dow Automotive distributor in the UK and Ireland. “Our technical experts supported LEVC in the design of the new cabs, supplying comprehensive solutions, and also in optimizing the efficiency and reliability of the manufacturing processes,” said Richard Wollaston, Technical Account Manager at Antala Ltd UK.
The car body was bonded with Dow’s cutting edge BETAMATE™ and BETAFORCE™ structural adhesives systems, enhancing the flexibility and safety of the design and sealing the hard to weld substrates against environmental conditions. BETASEAL™ bonding solutions used for the glass bonding applications in the vehicles are compatible with all vehicle production processes, including cold- and warm-applied systems and meet OEM durability specifications as well as international vehicle safety standards.
BETAFILL™ seam sealants offer permanent elasticity and good adhesion properties for a variety of substrates, making them ideal for manufacturing and repair applications such as panel sealing, gap filling and finishing, and helping to prevent moisture intrusion that can lead to corrosion. The sealants also provide acoustical and thermal management benefits.
The taxis were designed with the new zero emission capable regulations in mind and are manufactured at LEVC’s new £325 million plant outside Coventry – the first new automotive manufacturing facility in the UK for over a decade and the first plant in the UK dedicated to electric vehicle production.
The new TX offers a comfortable ride with seating for six, forward facing wheelchair access, air conditioning, power sockets for laptops, on-board WIFI, phone charging facilities and an expansive panoramic roof. Active and passive safety systems are standard. The taxi can travel up to 80 miles on a single battery charge and is also fitted with a 1.5-litre petrol engine to assist with longer journeys – taking the vehicle’s range up to 377 miles.
LEVC expects to deliver new TX models in Europe later in 2018 – and subsequently across the world. Dow’s full range of aftermarket solutions will be used by LEVC in London and Dow and Antala are already working with LEVC on the design of the next generation of electric vehicles that will be Euro-6 compliant and deliver further emissions reductions.
About Dow Automotive Systems
Dow Automotive Systems is a leading global provider of proven collaborative solutions for automotive and commercial transportation manufacturers, tier suppliers and the aftermarket. We specialize in joining and assembly technologies including structural, elastic and rubber-to-substrate adhesive solutions; sealers; fluids and lubricants. Our products support vehicle lightweighting and structural integrity for strength, stiffness, safety and acoustic advancements. For additional information, visit www.dowautomotive.com or connect with us on LinkedIn.
About DowDuPont Specialty Products Division
DowDuPont Specialty Products, a division of DowDuPont (NYSE: DWDP), is a global innovation leader with technology-based materials, ingredients and solutions that help transform industries and everyday life. Our employees apply diverse science and expertise to help customers advance their best ideas and deliver essential innovations in key markets including electronics, transportation, building and construction, health and wellness, food and worker safety. DowDuPont intends to separate the Specialty Products Division into an independent, publicly traded company. More information can be found www.dow-dupont.com.