Constellium N.V. announced that it will be the primary supplier of aluminum auto body sheet for the new Mercedes-Benz CLS model, which entered the market in March 2018. The body shell of the CLS is designed to provide reduced weight and excellent rigidity along with good noise and vibration comfort and a high level of crash safety.
The CLS continues the aluminum hybrid construction principle that has proven successful in Mercedes-Benz’ current S, E and C-Class vehicles, with the aluminum content increased significantly compared to the preceding model series. Constellium will provide the coils for the outer trunk lid panels and fenders of the CLS. Surfalex®, which was designed by Constellium to offer high surface quality as well as specific hemming and roping properties, was chosen to achieve the new pioneering structure and look set by Mercedes designers.
The front wings, bonnet, boot lid, and large sections of the front and rear ends are made of sheet or cast aluminum. For example, to increase the local introduction stiffness, the damper brackets at the front are no longer of the usual sheet steel, but of cast aluminum, which made it possible to integrate and merge several parts into a single die-cast part.
Other design details include larger cross-sections, as well as precisely calculated stabilizing beads in the floor and bulkhead. High-strength adhesives are used extensively to firmly bond the parts, which in turn, helps increase the stiffness of the body shell.
The body is configured to offer a high level of crash safety. The coupe not only meets all current national and international laws, but also all rating requirements.
“Constellium is proud to contribute to the new Mercedes-Benz CLS with our Surfalex® aluminum solutions,” said Dieter Höll, vice president Global Automotive, Constellium. “This new program reflects the strong relationship established over the years with our customer as we deliver aluminum solutions to all main Mercedes-Benz auto lines. Our commitment to innovation enables us to develop new alloys and solutions from the original model design phase to the start of production.”