Borealis Xmod GB306SAF is used for air intake manifolds and other technical under the hood components exposed to high loads and peak temperatures of up to 140°C.
Borealis Xmod GB306SAF is used for air intake manifolds and other technical under the hood components exposed to high loads and peak temperatures of up to 140°C.

Borealis Xmod GB306SAF is a high stiffness, 36% glass fibre reinforced PP compound. It is specifically tailored for the manufacture of air intake manifolds (AIMs) and other under the hood components exposed to high loads and peak temperatures of up to 140°C. Vibration resistance, long-term chemical and heat resistance, combined with high fatigue and a broad operating temperature are among the thermoplastic composite material’s characteristics.

Borealis reports that Xmod GB306SAF offers a range of benefits compared to current glass reinforced polyamide (PA) compounds used for air intake manifolds, making it a viable alternative to PA. It can be used with existing manufacturing equipment and processes for air intake manifolds.

Volkswagen (VW) became the first automotive OEM to switch from glass reinforced PA to PP for its air intake manifold application, now used in a variety of its car models with engine sizes from 1.4 to 1.6 litres. Borealis Xmod GB306SAF was chosen by part manufacturer MAHLE Filter Systems UK and VW to meet their needs for lower system costs without significant changes in tooling, part design or equipment investment, as well as improving acoustic part behaviour and the use of a more environment-friendly material.

“With this engineered Borealis Xmod polypropylene grade, our automotive customers can now significantly lower material costs in the production of air intake manifolds without compromising on any part characteristics,” says Jost Eric Laumeyer, Borealis Global Mobility Marketing Manager, who received the Frost & Sullivan award on behalf of Borealis in London on 1 December. “This meets the customer's key priority in being an innovation oriented plastics supplier through achieving weight reduction targets, improving environmental performance and cost efficiency.”

The Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Research Team benchmarked Borealis’ product against key competitors across a number of performance criteria, including innovation, value added features/benefits, and increased customer return on investment, explains Robert Outram, Frost & Sullivan Global Programme Manager.

“The findings showed Borealis Xmod GB306SAF’s leading capability in addressing the market need for under the hood plastics that offer advanced performance at lower system and production costs," Outram reports.