Light as a feather
Light, lighter, featherweight. Mubea has considerably reduced the weight of the coil springs and stabilizer bars supplied to Mercedes-AMG. This achievement was now honored with the Daimler Supplier Award.
Small in size and inconspicuous, it has to handle weights of up to 1.5 tons. And do that while weighing only 1.7 kilograms itself. The approximately 30 cm long and 11 cm wide coil spring from Mubea. Supplied to Mercedes-AMG. The stabilizer bar was really well slimmed down. The magic word here is CFRP. That is, plastic reinforced with carbon fiber, also known as composite plastic. A carbon fiber is around ten times thinner than a human hair. Components made of carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) are corrosion-resistant, of high fatigue strength and around 50 percent lighter than comparable stabilizer bars made of steel.
For this extraordinary lightweight achievement, Mubea received the Daimler Supplier Award from Mercedes-Benz Cars in the “Innovation” category. Dr. Thomas Muhr, CEO of Mubea: “For us, the award is both a reason to be happy and a motivation. With innovative products, we want to continue contributing to an environmentally friendly and individual mobility in the upcoming years. The automobile has always been good for a revolution and will continue to change and reinvent itself in the years to come.”
A “factory shopfloor”, a mere one hundred square meters in size with an annual rent: 230 Marks. In today’s currency that is around 700 euros. That’s how it all started in 1916. Josef Muhr the elder and Josef Muhr junior, father and son, founded their spring factory in Attendorn. A small town in the Sauerland region, 90 kilometers to the Northwest of Cologne. In 1920, Ludwig Bender was incorporated as an associate partner. The Josef Muhr company thus became “Muhr und Bender”. Since 1931 the products of this company have had their own trademark: Mubea. The name is composed of the initial letters of the two company owners Mu(hr) and Be(nder) as well as the company headquarters: A(ttendorn).
A family owned company in its fourth generation
Today, the Mubea Group finds itself in the position of world market leader in the development and manufacture of complex automotive components that reduce the weight of vehicles. Focus areas: chassis, body, powertrain. Over 15,000 employees in over 50 locations. In 20 countries. Despite its size, the headquarters is still located in Attendorn and Mubea is still a family owned company. Now in its fourth generation.
The cooperation between Daimler AG and Mubea began in the 1930s. With the delivery of special springs for truck production. Many of the innovations for lightweight components have been developed to market maturity in close cooperation. Among other things, in 2010 Mubea set up a team for the development of springs made of glass-fiber reinforced plastic (GFRP). Following numerous pre-development projects at the Attendorn site, the first series order was placed in 2014. GFRP springs for the rear axle of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. For Mubea, the future of fiber-reinforced composites in automobiles is very promising. Whether CFRP or GFRP, the development work in lightweight construction continues. Because light as a feather is still not light enough.