Every car has these, yet very few people know what exactly they add to your car. They also do not know how most of the supercar and hypercar scene is affected negatively by this. A simple function that allows for a better car, is frowned upon in the higher end brands, here’s why.
These car panels are the main body parts of your car. They are every single little piece of the outside of your car. The paintable parts of the car. This technology is used to style the shape of the car, but aside from the looks of the car, it has a structural meaning. The panels help make the car more sturdy so that in the event of a car crash, you are protected.
Panels also help protect the car. The car has hundreds of tiny or very fragile pieces that are essential for the car to be fully functional. The body of the car protects all the internals of the car. For example, the hood and front bumper of the car, add more crunch space so that you do not get injured, but also protect the engine. Panel technology has allowed us to save thousands of dollars on internal repair. An engine repair on any normal car can cost as much as $20,000.
Now onto the part about how it negatively affects super and hyper cars. The panels do add protection to the car. They basically fortify the car, but as all fortification goes, it adds hundreds of pounds of weight. Each body panel is heavy. Auto makers such as Lamborghini, hate these panels because it makes the cars slower, and causes more costs in engineering.
It is a very strange thing because many cars have dozens of body panels, but McLaren was able to find a way around it. While still maintaining a legal status, McLaren developed a car with only three body panels. This in turn saved hundreds of pounds on the body frame, but it was still safe. It became one of the best performing cars.
Maybe someday in the future, many more auto brands will shift to this lighter method of body work, but until today, nothing has changed. Do we really want it to change though? Some automakers are just fine with the things now, and do not want to spend the extra money in development. We’ll just have to wait and see!