SUMMARYThe paper describes the development and application of a relatively fine mesh model, analysed using MSC NASTRAN, to predict absolute values of deflections which correlated closely to the mean measured deflections of the actual door. The model has proved valuable in identifying and correcting at the pre-production stage the problem of the front door fit conditions. The paper then discusses the application of the model for structural analysis using strain energy techniques. The resulting design gives 21% reduction in deflection and stress at critical points with only 3% increase in mass. This contributed to significant savings in proto-type testing and in addition, provided more efficient use of the material in the structure.