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$6.2m allocated to help make lighter, greener cars

19-07-2011
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The Government is providing attractive incentives to encourage the automotive industry to create lighter cars that help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Innovation and Industry Minister Senator Kim Carr said funding would be provided to four component manufacturers under the Green Car Innovation Fund for new “green” projects.

“Over $6.2 million is being awarded to component manufacturers CFusion, Toyoda Gosei Australia, Composite Materials Engineering and Hirotec,” Senator Carr said.

“The components being developed to retool our automotive industry will help cars that are friendlier on the environment and the pocket — in this case, we expect the four projects will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by around 133,000 tonnes and significantly reduce fuel consumption.”

CFusion will use about $1.4 million in funding to commercialise the world’s first one-piece carbon fibre automotive wheel, at about half the weight of aluminium wheels.

Toyoda Gosei is using funding of over $2.3 million to introduce and refine technologies for manufacturing lighter components – body sealing products and safety system products, such as air bag modules and plastic interior trim products.

CME will spend $797,399 in funds to develop a high strength, lightweight sandwich panel to be used in the load floor of Australian vehicles. This product will significantly reduce the weight of the load floor whilst meeting all of the performance requirements for this component.

Hirotec is using funding of more than $1.6 million to produce lighter automotive components including aluminium hoods and deck lids using innovative product design to significantly reduce the overall weight of passenger motor vehicles.

Senator Carr said the Government’s $5.4 billion New Car Plan, which includes the Green Car Innovation Fund, was transforming the Australian automotive industry and ensuring significant co-investment from around the world.

While the Fund closed to new applications in January to help fund flood recovery, it is continuing to generate approximately $2 billion in total project investment in the manufacturing sector.

Visit www.innovation.gov.au for more information.

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