Bayer teams up with automotive startup OEM

Bayer MaterialScience has announced a strategic collaboration with California-based startup Velozzi, a Progressive Automotive X Prize entrant.

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Bayer MaterialScience LLC (BMS, Pittsburgh, Pa.) is joining the race to deliver commercially viable, eco-friendly alternative energy vehicles (AEVs) by applying its materials, technologies and expertise to this burgeoning market. In a demonstration of its commitment to the AEV market, BMS announced today a strategic collaboration with Velozzi (Beverly Hills, Calif., USA), a start-up automotive OEM.

Working together with Velozzi as a participant in the Progressive Automotive X Prize (AXP) competition, BMS is helping to facilitate the journey to the ultimate destination: taking AEVs from concept cars to the showroom floor. The timing is opportune, as global pressures mount to create a new generation of super-efficient vehicles.

“BMS is committed to the AEV market and has a deep understanding of the role innovative materials play from concept through commercialization,” said David Loren, market lead, PCS Group, BMS.  “We are actively seeking collaborations with suppliers and OEMs to help them navigate through the complex AEV challenges such as vehicle weight and manufacturability,” Loren added.

Paul Platte, innovation manager, New Business Group, BMS, noted, “Beyond representing our commitment to AEV innovation, this collaboration also aligns well with Bayer’s global sustainability initiatives in the areas of reducing energy consumption and emissions.”
BMS supports both traditional and non-traditional OEMs, such as Velozzi, with high-performance materials including plastics, polyurethanes, carbon nanotubes, coatings, adhesives and sealants to create low-weight, high-efficiency AEVs. Velozzi is designing multiple lightweight, plug-in, multi-fuel hybrid electric vehicles that will use a number of materials and application technologies from BMS.

“Collaborating with BMS brings us a world of possibilities on the road to consumer acceptance,” said Roberto Velozzi, Velozzi CEO. “With the broad selection of innovative materials and technologies BMS offers, we can produce a vehicle that not only appeals to consumers’ desire for fuel economy, but also their sense of style.” Velozzi added that many BMS materials require a low initial capital investment, making the move into mass production cost effective.  

Loren points out that, in addition to the materials used, another key differentiator between AEVs and traditional automobiles is the innovative manner in which these materials are incorporated into the vehicles themselves to achieve the unique demands of this market.

“Any way you look at it, the AEV market represents a paradigm shift that impacts all aspects of vehicle design and production,” explains Loren. “As a leader in innovation and high-tech materials, BMS is well positioned to work with OEMs to ‘reinvent’ the traditional approach and, in turn, pave the way for broad AEV availability and acceptance.”