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Whitestar body panels ?

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Cobos, Mar 20, 2008.

  1. Cobos

    Cobos S60 owner since 2013

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    I thought I'd ask you guys what you think the Whitestar body panels will be made of, or how they'll be made?
    The Roadster has carbon fiber which is way too expensive for the Whitestar, so it has to be something different. Do you think they could use plastic as the body panels the way Think does? I beleive plastic panels has an advantage in both weight and price compared to regular steel. As well as being rust and dent proof. Looking at the Think I'd say the City car dosen't look very luxury, but their new Ox concept also uses plastic body panels and that at least on pictures looks pretty nice. What do you guys think?

    Cobos
     
  2. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    Geneva 2008: Think Ox - Car Picture Photo Gallery from 4Car

    Weight and cost must be brought down. Plastic seems to be the only candidate. I suppose the only way to get a semi-metallic finish will be to embed aluminium flakes in the polymer at moulding time.

    Cue all those reviews which state -"the washing-up-bowl-look may not be to everyone's taste...."
     
  3. Albern

    Albern Member

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    Given that Tesla has positioned the Whitestar competitively with the current BMW 5 Series based on size, price, and possibly performance I would think aluminum would make up most of the body panels - doors, hood, trunk, roof, and front and rear quarter-panels. Plastic would likely be reserved for the front and rear bumpers, additional exterior trim, and the side mirrors. Although aluminum is still more expensive than steel it is obviously less expensive than carbon fiber. Another candidate could be fiberglass (as used in the Corvette) but automakers don't seem to like using that composite for reasons I'm no sure of at the moment.

    No offense guys but I'm surprised that an all plastic body car would even come up for the Whitestar. The product itself is geared more towards the high end of the market. Car guys (and gals) usually associate plastic with having a cheap look and feel (especially in the interior) and are undesirable.
     
  4. WarpedOne

    WarpedOne Supreme Premier

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    My 2003 Renault Laguna has plastic fenders and silver metalic paint.
    By the look you cannot tell the difference between them and doors. They look exactly the same.
     
  5. Cobos

    Cobos S60 owner since 2013

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    Aluminum or another specific metal-alloy would of course make a nice compromise between lightness and strength, but isn't that usually very expensive? I know the A8 uses an all-aluminum body and panels. But I always thought they only used that on the top model for the brand because it's definately not cheap. Comparing to the BMW 5 series they start at $44k and they don't have a $20 battery so I always thought the problem with the Whitestar was the price. They need to keep the weight down, and at the same time can't use expensive but light options like the carbon fiber. I do see that this is a real problem though :) If WarpedOne's observation is correct they might end up with plastic without anyone noticing... I suppose a combination of Al and plastic would be the best compromise.

    Cobos
     
  6. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    Plastic bumpers and grill etc, here.

    Also check your gas filler door. They are all plastic now too.
     

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