McLaren Teams with Divergent for Advanced 3D Printing in Supercars

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Breaking new ground in automotive innovation, McLaren has teamed up with California-based Divergent Technologies in a multi-year collaboration. The duo will use additive manufacturing for vehicle design and production, focusing on optimizing performance, sustainability, and efficiency.

Initially, McLaren will use Divergent’s manufacturing platform DAPS (Divergent Adaptive Production System) to make chassis components for its next-generation supercars. This will help reduce vehicle weight and boost dynamic performance, which are essential to McLaren’s brand DNA. The collaboration will integrate more complex designs into their vehicle architecture, promising better manufacturing efficiencies and supporting a more sustainable supply chain.

According to McLaren CEO Michael Leiters, Divergent’s technology will help the brand to further reduce weight in its complex structures, which will ultimately benefit the driving experience of the customers.

Similarly, Divergent Founder and CEO Kevin Czinger said, “Our collaboration speaks to McLaren’s commitment to adopting the highest-performance technology to push the envelope on customer experience. DAPS offers automotive manufacturers the means to harness computing power to deliver fully optimized, digitally manufactured structures with unparalleled design freedom.”

KUKA robots used in DAPS are located at the Divergent 3D factory. Image courtesy of Marc Weisberg.

Divergent has invented a complete manufacturing solution to address system-level challenges. DAPS is an advanced manufacturing platform combining hardware and software to produce complex, optimized vehicle structures. Using a data-driven approach for designing and building vehicle structures, DAPS creates lightweight, efficient components to radically transform auto manufacturing economics. Given a set of digital requirements as input, the machine automatically computationally engineers additively manufactures, and assembles any complex structure. The system is able to move seamlessly between manufacturing different vehicle models.

Divergent has previously partnered with major automotive brands like Bugatti, Aston Martin, and Mercedes-AMG, helping them to create innovative, high-performance vehicle components that push the boundaries of traditional automotive design.

Seeking to reinforce McLaren’s position at the forefront of automotive innovation, this latest partnership aims to integrate Divergent’s cutting-edge technology to achieve unprecedented levels of vehicle performance and sustainability. By leveraging DAPS, McLaren hopes to push the boundaries of what’s possible in automotive design and manufacturing, setting new standards for the industry.

McLaren Artura supercar. Image courtesy of McLaren.

In the past, McLaren has employed various 3D printing technologies to boost its manufacturing processes. For example, it partnered with Stratasys, using its Neo800 stereolithography 3D printers. It allowed the carmaker to produce up to 9,000 parts per year, including aerodynamic components for wind tunnel testing and full-scale prototypes. Additionally, McLaren has employed 3D printing to produce titanium brake calipers, lightweight fixtures, jigs, and small molds, which would otherwise require more time-consuming and material-intensive processes.

McLaren’s next-generation supercars, including models like the Artura and the 750S, could potentially benefit from this technology. The Artura is a high-performance hybrid supercar that incorporates innovative design and lightweight construction, making it an ideal candidate for 3D printed components. Similarly, the 750S, an evolution of the 720S, features new materials and advanced aerodynamics that could be further enhanced by DAPS, pushing the limits of performance and efficiency even further.

The collaboration between McLaren and Divergent represents a forward-thinking approach to automotive manufacturing. By integrating Divergent’s DAPS, McLaren seeks to set new benchmarks in the industry and continue pushing the boundaries of performance and sustainability for supercars.

This development in AM points to a bright future for the iconic brand. McLaren’s commitment to excellence remains unwavering as they continue to innovate and push the limits. The partnership with Divergent represents a significant step forward, marking the beginning of a potentially transformative period for McLaren Automotive and the broader high-performance automotive industry.

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