Benecke-Kaliko Opens Up Creative Possibilities of a Whole New Kind for the Vehicle Interior
2014The Alfa MiTo instrument panel sports the world's first gradient surface technology in series-vehicle production / Spray-mist effect on two-tone surface employing just one material sheet
- The Alfa MiTo instrument panel sports the world's first gradient surface technology in series-vehicle production
- Spray-mist effect on two-tone surface employing just one material sheet
The gradient surface technology developed by Benecke-Kaliko opens up to automotive manufacturers' creative opportunities of a whole new kind in the design of modern vehicle interiors. It is yet another example of the surface manufacturer's wide-ranging surface expertise and virtually unlimited creative versatility. The new technology is celebrating its world premiere in series production on the instrument panel of the new Alfa Romeo MiTo.
The instrument panel in this Italian vehicle is a real eye-catcher. The colors on the TEPEO® foil manufactured by Benecke-Kaliko seem to have been sprayed on, transitioning from black to red. "With our gradient surface technology, we allow automotive manufacturers and suppliers to now manufacture two-tone interior components using just one single material sheet," notes Michael Mäker, head of the Surfaces and Design Technology Center at Benecke-Kaliko, underscoring a further advantage that simplifies the manufacturing process for the customer. What is more, the procedure can be applied to nearly all materials from Benecke-Kaliko.
The surface manufacturer's developers had just one year to realize the customer's specifications for the two-tone design of the instrument panel surface and optimize the printing method involved. The main challenge here was one of achieving a uniform color gradient for the spray-mist effect and positioning the blend as desired. "This project breaks new ground for us and is thus extremely important," says Mäker. "After all, none of our competitors offer a printing method like this for production vehicles."
But it is not only the spectacular TEPEO® foil that impressed Alfa Romeo. The automotive manufacturer also chose Benecke-Kaliko for the seats of the MiTo, which are covered in the Acella® material.
ContiTech Antriebssysteme GmbH
With provisional sales of around €33.3 billion in 2013, Continental is among the leading automotive suppliers worldwide. As a supplier of brake systems, systems and components for powertrains and chassis, instrumentation, infotainment solutions, vehicle electronics, tires and technical elastomers, Continental contributes to enhanced driving safety and global climate protection. Continental is also an expert partner in networked automobile communication. Continental currently has more than 177,000 employees in 46 countries.
The ContiTech division numbers among the leading suppliers of a host of technical rubber products and is a specialist for plastics technology. The division develops and produces functional parts, components and systems for the automotive industry and other important industries. ContiTech currently has a workforce of approximately 29,500 employees. In 2012, it achieved sales of about €3.7 billion.
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