Composite brings stronger car doors, front ends

Mazda's door and front-end modules feature a low-viscosity, high-flow Verton MFX polypropylene composite from LNP.

Engineers at Mazda Motor Corp. picked Verton MFX for the 2003 Mazda 6 sedan's front-end module, which holds radiator components, the fan assembly, and the hood latch; and door modules holding speakers, latch assemblies, door-lock actuators, and glass-window regulators.

The material, from LNP Engineering Plastics, Exton, Pa. (, can be injection-compression or injection molded. Earlier modules are steel-stamped parts or press-molded glass-mat-reinforced thermoplastics. "But molding the MFX reduces pressure and shear on the long-glass fibers compared to conventional injection-molding processes," says Matt Miklos, LNP global Verton business leader. "As a result, the glass fibers are significantly longer after molding than with conventional injection molding. The longer glass-fiber length means higher impact strength," he adds. Also, the modules can be molded with thinner wall sections, said to cut weight without sacrificing strength.