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Here is why most modern cars have that weird flat edge around the wheel wells

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  • Here is why most modern cars have that weird flat edge around the wheel wells

    [Quote=Jalopnik]You see that? What’s that flat strip of body possibly for? To find out, I reached out to Volvo designer T. Jon Mayer, who I’d previously met on the first drive event for the new 2019 Volvo S60.

    The initial purpose of including the flattened arch in the design is for structural support of the stamped panels. Apparently it’s as simple as that. Here’s how T. Jon explained it to me, edited for clarity:
    “The wheel arch flat, which is the flat surface before the end of [the panel], which is common on most cars these days, helps to structurally support the metal and the stamping of that area. And then what we’ve added on top of that is what we call a little sickle, sort of a little undercut there of a feature, first shown on the Concept Coupe from 2013.”

    “Where you have more definition in a crease in sheetmetal, it’s able to hold the shape more accurately. So if you do put a crease in something, generally it holds that shape better.”

    “We do play around with those, trying to get those openings of the wheel arches to be quite circular looking, even though they are not quite circles. It’s kind of an optical illusion.”
    So there you have it. The fenders on your car looks like it had a few measures shaved off to help with the structure of the panels, and add a little bit of a boost to the design profile of the car.[/Quote

    does this also work with composite body panels.?

    i used to prefer the c5 rounded wheel well body panels around the wheel wells
    Last edited by John; 02-19-2019, 09:29 PM. Reason: Thanks JB. Imported key quote of the article here for easier access.

  • #2
    Yes it does; the flat edge works on SMC composites too.

    Click image for larger version

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    Z06 coming late this summer: Hypersonic Gray HTC, two tone blue interior, complete high wing/aero package. CCB’s, with every piece of visible carbon fiber available. Lifetime, annual contributors, and 24 year members of National Corvette Museum. Home is the beautiful Pacific Northwest.


    • #3
      Good info JB, makes sense. The C3s have that look as well