Laminated Glass Gaining Ground at 2007 North American International Auto Show


PHOTO

More than 40 vehicles on display with laminated glass

DETROIT, Jan. 12 -- More than 40 production vehicles on display at the 2007 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) tout laminated glass in side and rear windows, as well as roof applications, as reported by the Enhanced Protective Glass Automotive Association (EPGAA). Laminated glass has become a mainstream technology in the automotive industry, appearing on 36 vehicle platforms in North America today, compared to three platforms worldwide five years ago.

Automakers are turning to laminated glass to provide improved interior acoustics, safety, security and ultraviolet protection.

"The goal of the EPGAA is to educate the automotive industry and consumers on the benefits of using laminated glass in applications other than windshields," said Pete Dishart, EPGAA President and global product manager for PPG Industries, Inc. "We are encouraged to see that 90 percent of the top 10 automakers worldwide offer laminated glass as standard or optional equipment."

Automakers and car buyers have trusted laminated glass in windshields for more than 70 years. In addition to windshield applications, laminated glass is being developed specifically for use in side and rear window, and roof applications.

Below is a list of production vehicles on the 2007 NAIAS floor that offer laminated glass:

   Production vehicles offering laminated glass as a standard feature:

  Audi A8                  Chevy TrailBlazer SS    Maybach
  Bentley Continental GT   Chrysler Aspen Limited  Mercedes S-Class
  Buick Enclave            GMC Envoy Denali        Maserati Quatroporte
  Buick LaCrosse           Jaguar XJ               Porsche 911 Targa
  Buick Lucerne            Land Rover LR3          Saab 9-7X
  Buick Rainer             Land Rover Range Rover  Saturn Aura
  Cadillac DTS             Mercedes CL 550
  Cadillac STS             Mercedes GL

   Production vehicles offering laminated glass as an optional feature:

  Audi A4                  Mercedes E-Class        Volvo S-40
                           (Sedan & Wagon)
  Audi A6                  Mercedes M-Class        Volvo S-60
  Audi Q7                  Mercedes R-Class        Volvo S-80
  Chevy Malibu             Mercury Grand Marquis   Volvo V-50
  Chrysler Pacifica        Porsche Cayenne         Volvo V-70
  Lexus LS 460             Subaru Forester         Volvo XC70
  Lexus LS 600             Subaru Outback          Volvo XC90
  Mercedes B-Class         Volvo C-30              Volvo S-60

Laminated glass provides five key benefits, to help protect vehicle occupants:

Safety

In addition to meeting global automotive safety standards, laminated glass could help save up to 1,300 lives annually and reduce occupant ejection - according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Security

With a tough plastic interlayer between two glass panes, laminated glass significantly increases resistance to vehicle intrusion. The EPGAA states that compared to tempered glass, which can be shattered in about one-tenth of a second, laminated glass can protect the vehicle and the objects within for about 30 seconds - enough time to deter most would-be thieves.

Sound Reduction

The interlayer in laminated glass helps provide protection from outside wind and road noises, keeping the car interior quieter and more comfortable. This benefit allows automakers to offer consumers a vehicle with additional value without significantly increasing the cost of the vehicle. Acoustic studies note that laminated glass reduces interior noise by three to four decibels, allowing for better conversation and use of entertainment equipment.

Thermal

Vehicles equipped with laminated glass can easily add infrared (IR) coatings to block IR heat energy. Testing has shown when vehicles equipped with these coatings are parked in the sun with the windows closed, the laminated glass reduces the effects of solar heat on the vehicle. Test results prove the interior of the vehicle can be up to 18 degrees F cooler than if the side windows were equipped with untreated tempered glass.

Ultraviolet

Comprehensive testing conducted by the EPGAA proves that cars with laminated glass can protect passengers from harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays, which have been associated with skin cancer. The testing has found that laminated glass screens up to 98 percent of damaging UV rays, providing UV protection equivalent to 50+ SPF sunscreen, compared to tempered glass which only blocks up to 66 percent.

In addition to protecting skin, the blocking of UV light by laminated glass provides protection to the interior of vehicles. Laminated glass minimizes the effects of UV rays in causing interior vehicle fabric colors to fade and degrade, leather to age, and plastic and wood to crack.

About the EPGAA

The Enhanced Protective Glass Automotive Association (EPGAA) is composed of laminate and glass providers to provide information and overall education on the development of laminated glass for added vehicle security, occupant comfort and safety. Currently, DuPont Automotive; Glasstech, Inc.; Guardian Industries Corp.; PPG Industries, Inc.; Saint-Gobain Sekurit; Sekisui America Corporation and Solutia Automotive are members of the EPGAA. For more information on the EPGAA, visit www.epgaa.com.

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