News Releases

TRW Announces up to 50 Percent Weight Reduction in Airbag Modules

Sep 15, 2009

FRANKFURT, Germany, Sept. 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. (NYSE: TRW) is presenting its latest passenger and curtain airbag modules - designed to reduce weight by up to 50 percent compared with previous generations and provide several further advantages. The weight saving has been achieved by using advanced materials and production processes in addition to optimizing the design of the module.

Alexander Heilig, director Occupant Safety Systems Engineering, said: "As the industry continues to place increasing focus on the environment, the importance of reducing vehicle weight is paramount. Our vehicle manufacturer customers are using weight reduction as a key strategy in developing more fuel efficient vehicles.

"As a leader in the airbag field, TRW has been able to satisfy stringent customer and industry regulatory requirements, while halving the weight of its airbag modules in recent years - now among the lightest on the market - in addition to minimizing product size and packaging. The integration of the inflator into the cushion, combined with new inflation technologies and new bag and housing concepts and materials, have led to significant weight reduction potential over the previous few years."

TRW's latest generation DI-10 airbag inflator is a disc-type inflator which utilizes a new and more efficient propellant formulation. It uses high-grade materials for the housing and weld joint technology to reduce package size.

TRW's new SHI2 curtain airbag inflator offers flexible packaging, which allows it to be tailored to individual customer and market requirements. It uses an innovative design with a quick vessel opening technology, which is highly tailorable for both airbag cushion size and airbag fill time. A new smaller housing, high tech materials and simplified design have enabled a lighter weight product.

Dirk Schultz, global engineering director Inflatable Restraint Systems, added: "Our new generation of lightweight airbag inflators and modules brings a number of key advantages. Firstly, with our scaleable Airbag Control Unit we are able to offer a flexible airbag module solution, which allows cost driven manufacturers to equip their vehicles with safety electronics, while maintaining their competitiveness. This flexibility is essential for original equipment manufacturers looking for a single solution to satisfy both the emerging and export markets.

"Secondly, further improved manufacturing processes, increased product standardization, and improved vertical integration have led to enhanced product quality and robustness in combination with a noticeable cost reduction. In addition, we are able to support our customers in delivering greater fuel economy - a key part of TRW's strategy is to add value and develop more affordable solutions."

TRW has been developing and manufacturing airbag modules for over 30 years with several leading innovations, such as its first to market compact low-mounted knee airbag module and a head protection system for convertible vehicles which started production recently.

Schultz added: "With a wealth of experience and success within our Occupant Safety Systems business, TRW is well positioned to further develop and enhance its airbag technology. We are already working on our next generation of airbag modules, which should realize further weight reductions of around 30 to 50 percent."


About TRW

With 2008 sales of $15.0 billion, TRW Automotive ranks among the world's leading automotive suppliers. Headquartered in Livonia, Michigan, USA, the Company, through its subsidiaries, operates in 26 countries and employs approximately 60,000 people worldwide. TRW Automotive products include integrated vehicle control and driver assist systems, braking systems, steering systems, suspension systems, occupant safety systems (seat belts and airbags), electronics, engine components, fastening systems and aftermarket replacement parts and services. All references to "TRW Automotive", "TRW" or the "Company" in this press release refer to TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. and its subsidiaries, unless otherwise indicated. TRW Automotive news is available on the internet at

Forward-Looking Statements

This release contains statements that are not statements of historical fact, but instead are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. We caution readers not to place undue reliance on these statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. All forward-looking statements are subject to numerous assumptions, risks and uncertainties which can cause our actual results to differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking statements, including those set forth in our Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2008 (our "Form 10-K") and in our Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended April 3, 2009 and July 3, 2009, such as: any prolonged contraction in automotive sales and production adversely affecting our results, liquidity or the viability of our supply base; the financial condition of OEMs, particularly the Detroit Three, adversely affecting us or the viability of our supply base; disruptions in the financial markets adversely impacting the availability and cost of credit negatively affecting our business; our substantial debt and resulting vulnerability to economic or industry downturns and to rising interest rates; escalating pricing pressures from our customers; commodity inflationary pressures adversely affecting our profitability and supply base; our dependence on our largest customers; costs of product liability, warranty and recall claims and efforts by customers to adversely alter terms and conditions concerning warranty and recall participation; strengthening of the U.S. dollar and other foreign currency exchange rate fluctuations impacting our results; any increase in the expense and funding requirements of our pension and other postretirement benefits; risks associated with non-U.S. operations, including economic uncertainty in some regions; work stoppages or other labor issues at our facilities or at the facilities of our customers or suppliers; assertions by or against us relating to intellectual property rights; the possibility that our largest stockholder's interests will conflict with ours or our other stockholders' interests; and other risks and uncertainties set forth in our Form 10-K and in our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We do not undertake any obligation to release publicly any revision to any of these forward-looking statements.

SOURCE TRW Automotive Holdings Corp.

SOURCE: TRW Automotive Holdings Corp.

Web site:

Email Page Print RSS
email print rss