Polymer oil pan module
DuPont™ Zytel® nylon resin in the first polymer oil pan module adopted for serial-production cars
The oil pan for Daimler’s new 4-cylinder diesel engine (OM651), which powers Mercedes-Benz C Class vehicles, consists of a die-cast aluminum upper shell and a multifunctional lower shell made of DuPont™ Zytel®.
Weight saving for fuel savings and CO2 emissions reductions: The implemented solution (design + material) achieves a significant weight reduction of 1.1 kilogram versus an entirely aluminum design.
Part’s stiffness: The front section is of a more level design due to chassis and steering gear space requirements. Consequently, this section’s resistance to bending and stiffness is relatively low, requiring additional design measures to minimize warp and deformation, and to eliminate the potential for leakages at the joint with the aluminum upper shell.
Production efficiency is increased due to the high flow of the heat-stabilized, glass-fiber reinforced nylon, enabling long flow distances, short injection times and the reliable molding of thin-walled sections. The material’s high compatibility with vibration welding further benefits productivity.
Design freedom: the use of thermoplastic polymers for oil pans creates a significant opportunity for further functional integration. In its current form the oil deflector has been integrated – used to promote a steady flow of oil back to the sump.
Materials Selected and Why
DuPont™ Zytel® - due to the high melt flow of Zytel® nylon resin, one single, central gate was enough to completely fill the mold cavity, while permitting short molding cycles, tool costs reduction, and simplified process control. The number of weld lines and the risk of air entrapments are also minimized.