HANOVER, Germany (Aug. 15, 2011)—Continental A.G. said it has developed a range of light-weight airsprings which can reduce the weight on a truck axle by up to 12 kilograms per axle.
The key development is to replace the steel piston shaft with a hollow thermoplastic component, Conti said.
ContiTech Air Spring Systems claims to be the only manufacturer worldwide to succeed in mass-producing truck air springs with a cylindrical plastic piston. This innovation can reduce the weight of the piston by up to 75 percent, said Conti.
The technology is being used for the first time on the drive axles of the new Actros from Mercedes-Benz.
Air spring systems with plastic pistons have been used for many years now, particularly in trailers, Conti said. However, these conventional systems only use the bellows volume for riding comfort, according to the company, and the associated pistons are generally completely closed.