Volvo LCP 2000 is the result of a project study for advanced technology, design and materials development. One of the fundamental ideas of the project has been to take into consideration the energy consumption throughout the entire service life of the car. A light car built out of light materials such as magnesium has contributed to a low total energy consumption. The Volvo LCP 2000 contains a total of about 50 kg magnesium alloys (7% of gross weight). Examples of components made out of magnesium are the transmission and clutch housings, wheels, steering rack housing, rear suspension arms, subframe and the cylinderblock.
Surface coating and corrosion of magnesium have been studied in laboratory and by vehicle tests. Corrosion protection of chassis components, creep, relaxation and fatigue strength at elevated temperatures are the most critical properties.
This paper highlights some results based on the project studies concerning surface coating, corrosion and strength properties.