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First production agreement for Quickstep's revolutionary automotive carbon composite technology

News International-French

28 Oct 2014

Sydney based manufacturer of high‐grade carbon fibre composite components, Quickstep Holdings Limited, announced that it has entered into its first agreement to utilise its innovative “Resin Spray Transfer” (RST) technology developed for the automotive industry.

Quickstep has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with defence contractor Thales Australia confirming its selection as exclusive supplier of the bonnet, side skirts and mud guards for Hawkei vehicles.

Thales is currently bidding to supply the Australian designed and manufactured Hawkei to the Defence Materiel Organisation, to replace Army Land Rovers. Final approval is expected in 2015, which could lead to the production of up to 1300 Hawkei vehicles over four years.

Completion of the agreement, which is expected to be valued in excess of $8 million, would represent a significant achievement for Quickstep and provide a strong endorsement of this new manufacturing technology within the broader automotive industry.

Quickstep's RST technology uses an innovative ‘robotised’ process that dramatically reduces manufacturing times and costs for producing carbon fibre composite vehicle parts. The process delivers parts that are strong and corrosion‐resistant yet lightweight, key requirements for Hawkei vehicles. Importantly, these same criteria are crucial for future commercial vehicles required to comply with US and European fuel efficiency legislation, leading Quickstep to advance discussions with several leading car makers. Reducing the weight of passenger cars will help reduce fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions.

Quickstep’s Executive Director Mr Philippe Odouard said that the agreement with Thales represented a crucial stepping‐stone towards commercialising its RST technology within the automotive industry.

"We are excited to be involved in the Hawkei project. We look forward to the project's initiation from the DMO and, on our current expected schedule, anticipate delivering first parts in 2015. This is a revolutionary carbon fibre composite technology which will reduce the weight of key components by up to 50%, representing a big improvement. This bonnet is made in one piece using a sandwich structure, the application of the RST process  to a sandwich structure is an important step forward dramatically reducing assembly costs in addition to saving

"This agreement enhances our opportunity to sell the RST technology to the world's leading automobile producers. This is a highly innovative technology which demonstrates a positive future for carbon fibre manufacturing in Australia."