Zhejiang Geely Holding Group has filed a patent for a latch assembly for vehicle hoods. The assembly includes a first plate with an elongated slot, a second plate, a first member connected to the second plate, and at least one deformable element. The deformable element secures the plates together but can deform upon impact, allowing the first plate to slide relative to the second plate. The patent also covers a hood elevation system and a method for manufacturing the latch assembly. GlobalData’s report on Zhejiang Geely Holding Group gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, HEV energy management was a key innovation area identified from patents. Zhejiang Geely Holding Group's grant share as of September 2023 was 70%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Latch assembly for hood of a vehicle

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co Ltd

A recently filed patent (Publication Number: US20230313569A1) describes a latch assembly for the hood of a vehicle. The latch assembly includes a first plate with an elongated slot, a second plate, and a first member connected to the second plate. The first member extends vertically through the elongated slot, allowing the first plate to slide relative to the second plate. The latch assembly also includes at least one deformable element that secures the first plate to the second plate in a retracted position. Upon impact, the deformable element deforms, allowing the first plate to slide to an extended position.

The latch assembly may further include a second member connected to the second plate and a rod extending horizontally from the first member to the second member. This rod can be slidably connected to a hood latch of the vehicle. In the retracted position, the first member extends through a first region of the elongated slot, and in the extended position, it extends through a second region of the slot. The first member and second member may have adjustment screws to adjust the position of the rod vertically relative to the second plate.

The second plate of the latch assembly may have securing slots with protrusions that lock the deformable element in the retracted position. Additionally, the latch assembly may include a friction decreasing unit. The deformable element can be a plastic bushing with an annular part and a middle part, which are spaced apart.

The patent also describes a hood elevation system for a vehicle that includes the latch assembly. The system includes an actuator that moves the latch assembly relative to the hood latch upon a collision with a vulnerable road user. When actuated, the latch assembly moves away from the hood latch, and the deformable element deforms when the latch assembly reaches a stop position. This allows the first plate to slide relative to the second plate to an extended position.

The patent further mentions a method for manufacturing the latch assembly, which involves providing the first and second plates, mechanically connecting the first member to the second plate, and slidably connecting the first plate to the second plate. The method also includes providing at least one deformable element that secures the first plate to the second plate and deforms upon impact.

In summary, the patent describes a latch assembly and hood elevation system for a vehicle that allows the hood to slide upon impact with a vulnerable road user. The system includes deformable elements and an actuator to facilitate this movement. The latch assembly can be manufactured using a specific method outlined in the patent.

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