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Benteler Automotive Corp.

Thermally Efficient, Air-Gap Manifold and Exhaust Tube Applications, Parts and Systems

Recognizing the need for improved thermal management to reduce emissions and under hood temperatures, Benteler pioneered the design and manufacture of airgap, or dual-wall, exhaust manifolds.  The innovation for this year’s PACE Award is a dual-wall manifold design that provides a thin, de-coupled liner with low thermal mass and rapid energy transfer to the catalytic converter.  This enables reduced cold-start emissions due to improved “light-off” times, thereby avoiding more costly emission reduction technologies, decreased catalyst size and precious metal content, and reduced overall system size and costs.  The first application is in the Cadillac Northstar engine.

Development of this innovation required extraordinary “synchronous engineering” between the customer and Benteler’s experts in tool and die, stamping, engineering, hydroforming, and manufacturing areas.  This coordinated effort provided immediate assurance that tight-tolerance designs were process-capable, on time, and within all cost and performance targets.  Improved durability and NVH levels were achieved simultaneously.

Reflecting their customers’ overwhelming acceptance of this technology and associated end-products, Benteler is fully and strategically committed to air-gap systems, moving to nearly 100% production of those manifold products in the near future.  Benteler’s culture of innovation and engineering excellence are very well reflected in this air-gap system and its well-deserved PACE Award.