Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Green Car Reports feature Audi A8 lightweight composite wheels from Lacks

Green Car Reports cite lightweight wheels from Lacks for Audi A8 launch

Can plastic wheels improve fuel efficiency?
Soon, drivers of the new 2015 Audi A8 will have a chance to find out. The refreshed version of Audi's flagship sedan will be offered with wheels made from a composite material called Chromtec. The wheel manufacturer, Lacks Wheel Trim Systems, says the wheel comprises "a lightweight structural backbone and a design surface that consists of a proprietary high-impact modified polymer, proprietary urethane cellular foam system and true metallic finishes." The new material, it says, will save roughly 38.8 pounds per vehicle--a substantial amount even on a large luxury sedan like the Audi A8.

2015 Audi A8 / S8 - 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show2015 Audi A8 / S8 -
2013 Frankfurt Motor Show


Reducing weight typically leads to an improvement in fuel economy, and on a sedan as big as the A8, any weight savings is a significant achievement.
Since the wheels have a metallic finish, they should be hard to distinguish from conventional alloy rims. Composite wheels have been tested before: In 2007, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft research facility tested wheels made from glass-reinforced plastic (GRP) in its own simulator. However, the 2015 A8 should be the first production car to have them. Unveiled last month at the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show, it's a refreshed version of the current generation of Audi's full-size luxury sedan. Among the A8 models expected to return for the 2015 model year is the TDI diesel. The new A8 is also expected to keep the 2014 model's 3.0-liter V-6, which produces 240 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque. Whether composite wheels will improve the 2014 model's EPA fuel economy rating--28 mpg combined (24 mpg city, 36 mpg highway)--remains to be seen. Gas-mileage ratings will be issued several months from now, closer to the time that the new A8 goes on sale.
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Monday, September 23, 2013

2015 Audi A8 to use polymer composite wheel by Lacks Wheel Trim Systems

Click here for the full article Motor Authority article on new Audi A8 composite wheel by Lacks

The updated 2015 Audi A8 will get a new set of wheels made from a somewhat unusual material. Instead of aluminum, the wheels will be made of a plastic composite material called Chromtec. The wheels' manufacturer, Lacks Wheel Trim Systems, says the wheel comprises "a lightweight structural backbone and a design surface that consists of a proprietary high-impact modified polymer, proprietary urethane cellular foam system and true metallic finishes."

The plastic rims, it says, will have a "true metallic finish," so they should still shine like metal wheels. What's the advantage of making a wheel out of plastic? As Colin Chapman would say, they "add lightness." Lacks says the A8's new wheels eliminate 38.8 pounds of weight per vehicle against conventional metal wheels. Removing weight from a car benefits fuel economy, acceleration, and handling--and in a big sedan like the A8, any weight savings is a significant achievement.

Making the wheels lighter could also result in a big reduction in unsprung weight, yielding extra benefits both for handling and ride comfort. Plastic and composite wheels have been in development for some time. In 2007, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft research facility developed a simulator for testing wheels made from glass-reinforced plastic (GRP). Six years later, it looks like the technology is finally ready for a production car. A refreshed version of the current model, the 2015 Audi A8 debuted at last month's Frankfurt Auto Show. Other updates to the latest A8 include new headlights with Matrix LED tech and sequential turn signals, added electronic safety features like lane assist and night vision, and other tweaks.

CNBC coverage of Lacks Composite Wheel on redesigned Audi A8

Click Here to Review CNBC Coverage of Lacks Audi A8 Press Release

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC, a business unit of Lacks Enterprises, Inc., announced today at the Frankfurt Motor Show that its new lightweight composite wheel systems are featured on the redesigned 2015 Audi A8. These wheels utilize the Lacks proprietary lightweight, highly-engineered composite technology that creates a beautiful, extraordinarily durable, fuel efficient and high-performing wheel built for both city and highway driving. These lightweight wheels designated by Audi as “Aluminum Technology Wheels” are provided in the Lacks Spinelle™ and Iridium™ finishes with an additional soft metallic complementary finish accent.
The A8 is Audi’s flagship passenger car, combining elegance, luxury and high performance into the segment-leading designs that characterize Audi vehicles. “Lacks is pleased to partner with Audi in offering our lightweight composite wheel technology on this important vehicle,” said Mike Dorney, Director of Global Business Development, Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC. “Our Iridium™ finishes on the wheels provide Audi owners with a highly engineered and beautiful solution that complements the A8’s class-defining exterior styling lines.”

About Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC
Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC, a distinct business unit of Lacks Enterprises, Inc., is a full-service supplier of automotive wheel components and systems. Its composite wheel technologies, featuring eVOLVE™ lightweight aero designs and Spinelle™ metal finish brands, offer customers industry firsts in wheel design, fuel efficiency and finish flexibility. Its performance and capabilities have earned loyal, long-term relationships with such global partners as Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, Nissan, Ford, Chrysler, General Motors and Volkswagen.

About Lacks Enterprises, Inc.
Lacks Enterprises, Inc. was formed in 1961. The company has grown to become a technology leader worldwide with a diversified operation providing complete turnkey solutions that rely on decades of experience in thermoplastic design, injection molding, plating, painting, assembly, logistics and supply chain management. Lacks also provides global export and distribution capabilities.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Lacks’ new lightweight composite wheel systems shown on 2015 Audi A8

Green Car Congress Article on new Audi A8 Wheel by Lacks

Lacks Wheel Trim Systems’ new lightweight composite wheel systems are featured on the redesigned 2015 Audi A8 being shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The Chromtec composites are a patented system comprising a lightweight structural backbone and a design surface that consists of a proprietary high impact modified polymer, proprietary urethane cellular foam system and true metallic finishes.

A typical Chromtec system provides weight savings over the conventional wheel technologies that allow for substantial weight reductions (varied by wheel design). In the case of the Audi A8, each wheel provides a 4.4 kilogram savings for a total of 17.6 kg per vehicle (38.8 total pounds). These lightweight wheels designated by Audi as “Aluminum Technology Wheels” are provided in the Lacks Spinelle and Iridium™finishes with an additional soft metallic complementary finish accent.

Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC, a distinct business unit of Lacks Enterprises, Inc., is a full-service supplier of automotive wheel components and systems. Its composite wheel technologies, featuring eVOLVE lightweight aero designs and Spinelle metal finish brands, offer customers industry firsts in wheel design, fuel efficiency and finish flexibility.

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Lacks’ new lightweight composite wheel systems shown on 2015 Audi A8:

Enhanced Online News Reports Lacks Lightweight Wheel makes Audi A8 debut

Lacks Light Wheel Concept Technology on 2015 Audi A8

For more information, click here:  Lacks Lightweight Wheel Featured on new Audi A8
IAA 2013
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.--()--Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC, a business unit of Lacks Enterprises, Inc., announced today at the Frankfurt Motor Show that its new lightweight composite wheel systems are featured on the redesigned 2015 Audi A8. These wheels utilize the Lacks proprietary lightweight, highly-engineered composite technology that creates a beautiful, extraordinarily durable, fuel efficient and high-performing wheel built for both city and highway driving. These lightweight wheels designated by Audi as “Aluminum Technology Wheels” are provided in the Lacks Spinelle™ and Iridium™ finishes with an additional soft metallic complementary finish accent.   

The A8 is Audi’s flagship passenger car, combining elegance, luxury and high performance into the segment-leading designs that characterize Audi vehicles. “Lacks is pleased to partner with Audi in offering our lightweight composite wheel technology on this important vehicle,” said Mike Dorney, Director of Global Business Development, Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC. “Our Iridium™ finishes on the wheels provide Audi owners with a highly engineered and beautiful solution that complements the A8’s class-defining exterior styling lines.”

About Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC

Lacks Wheel Trim Systems LLC, a distinct business unit of Lacks Enterprises, Inc., is a full-service supplier of automotive wheel components and systems. Its composite wheel technologies, featuring eVOLVE™ lightweight aero designs and Spinelle™ metal finish brands, offer customers industry firsts in wheel design, fuel efficiency and finish flexibility. Its performance and capabilities have earned loyal, long-term relationships with such global partners as Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, Nissan, Ford, Chrysler, General Motors and Volkswagen.

About Lacks Enterprises, Inc.

Lacks Enterprises, Inc. was formed in 1961. The company has grown to become a technology leader worldwide with a diversified operation providing complete turnkey solutions that rely on decades of experience in thermoplastic design, injection molding, plating, painting, assembly, logistics and supply chain management. Lacks also provides global export and distribution capabilities.


Contacts

The Millerschin Group, USA
Dick Pacini, 1-248-276-1970
Cell: 1-248-770-6446
dpacini@millerschingroup.com

Recent Stories


WardsAuto.com Technology Roundup: Lacks Wheels Featured on 2015 Audi A8

From WardsAuto.com...


Technology Roundup
Sep. 13, 2013 Jim Irwin | WardsAuto
Lightweighted Wheels Featured on ’15 Audi A8

Lacks Wheel Trim Systems looks to court OEMs with a technology that saves fuel through reduced wheel weight. The eVOLVE function builds upon Lacks’ existing Chromtec lightweight chrome wheel that meets car designers’ styling demands. eVOLVE adds a high-performance aluminum “backbone” for safety and stiffness, but uses a lighter, aerodynamic metal that reduces wheel weight up to 4.5 lbs. (2.0 kg). The weight savings per wheel can improve fuel economy up to 1.1 mpg (2.14 L/100km), an executive with Grand Rapids, MI-based Lacks says. “Lighter wheels tend to improve the ride and handling,” adds James Ardern, director-business development. Lacks announces at this week’s Frankfurt auto show that the function is featured on the ’15 Audi A8. The supplier is in talks with other OEMs to spread the technology.

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