SABIC Showcases Elastomer Products for the Tire and Automotive Sectors at RubberTech China 2018
Shanghai, China, September 19, 2018 – SABIC, a global leader in diversified chemicals, is showcasing its portfolio of elastomer products at RubberTech China 2018 in response to ever-changing technology trends and increased demand from China’s tire and automotive industries. SABIC’s first-time presence at this major trade fair for China’s rubber industry, which opened today in Shanghai, underscores its ongoing commitment to work across the value chain in China to develop the solutions needed to address emerging requirements in those sectors.
The synthetic rubber materials displayed by the company at RubberTech 2018 include SABIC® BR, a polybutadiene rubber which can produce tires with good wet traction, low rolling resistance, and high resilience. These attributes can result in improved fuel efficiency and longer-lasting tires. SABIC® EPDM, an ethylene propylene diene rubber, is also highlighted at SABIC’s booth. This material, with excellent weathering and ozone-resistant properties, can be used in a wide range of automotive applications, including weather seal profiles, hoses, dust covers, transmission belts, and other under-the-hood components.
China remains the world’s largest automotive market. Annual automobile production in the country exceeded 29 million units in 2017, accounting for nearly one-third of the global total, while sales reached 28.78 million units, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM). China’s annual auto sales have been forecast to peak at 42 million units around 2025.
Continued growth in automotive production and sales has propelled the demand for tires. Annual tire sales totalled 927 million units in China in 2017. In addition to keeping pace with this growth, tire manufacturers must also adapt to changing automotive technologies and address industry needs for safer, better tires and reduced environmental impact.
“As one of the fastest growing automotive markets globally, China is a strategic market for SABIC,” said Sergi Monros, Vice President, Performance Polymers and Industrial Solutions, Petrochemicals. “By expanding our elastomers offering to tire and automotive customers in the region, we are reinforcing in yet another way our very strong commitment to be present with the solutions and development support they need to succeed.”
SABIC has longstanding relationships with major OEMs and automotive component suppliers in China. The company has a global industry team with technical on-the-ground specialists focused on meeting the needs of the automotive industry through its portfolio of engineering thermoplastics and polyolefin materials and its engineering design expertise. Today, that business unit is collaborating with customers to develop innovative, lightweight applications to improve fuel efficiency, lower emissions, and meet a wide range of other needs, from styling and safety enhancements to reduced costs and manufacturing complexity.
One of SABIC’s key products for the automotive industry is SABIC® STAMAX™ long glass fiber-reinforced polypropylene (LGFPP). Leading automakers in China and across the world to use this specialty polypropylene material, primarily for large molded parts and structural applications like tailgate components, front-end modules, bumper fascias, instrument panels, seat structures, and door modules. As much as 50 percent in weight savings for these parts can be possible with the use of STAMAX resin, supporting automakers’ fuel efficiency and emissions targets. SABIC produces STAMAX resin in the Asia Pacific region from its plant site in Shanghai, China, having added capacity in 2015. With dedicated plants in Europe and North America as well, SABIC can deliver the materials consistency to meet specifications across world regions. SABIC also offers a range of engineering thermoplastic materials and blends, including its flagship portfolio of SABIC® LEXAN™ polycarbonate resins, for use in applications across the entire vehicle.