AGC sees an opportunity in curved glass for display screens that will handle increasingly complex HMI tasks

AGC sees an opportunity in curved glass for display screens that will handle increasingly complex HMI tasks

Glazing specialist AGC has announced its decision to establish a new production plant at AGC Automotive (Suzhou) - Suzhou Industrial Park - for the purpose of producing large 3D/complex-shaped cover glass for in-car-mounted screens and displays. The facilities feature a fully-integrated production line, equipped with the latest technologies, that handles every stage of the process from optical thin coating to decorative printing and composite moulding of complex curved surfaces. Commercial sales will begin in 2022 for several vehicle models whose orders have already been secured.

Due to major changes in the automotive industry, including autonomous driving, electrification and connected technology, vehicle cockpits are expected to continue adopting innovative, dynamic design as they evolve into a digital lounge. Driven by this trend, car-mounted display cover glass is expected to increase in size, shape-complexity, functionality, while at the same time, safe design is becoming a key demand as sizes increase. AGC has built up over 60 years of design expertise as a world-leading automotive glass company, which it draws on to supply customers with cover glass that delivers both high quality and safety.

In 2013, AGC became the world's first company to establish a production system for car-mounted display cover glass that fully integrates every stage from raw glass to final processing, and launched the product for sale that year. In 2017, the company also began manufacturing and offering curved glass in addition to the already available flat glass, and now holds the distinction of top global market share.

Together with the two existing plants in Japan, the establishment of this new plant marks AGC's third production facility, thereby securing a framework that will enable the company to provide high-quality glass on a global level. AGC also plans to establish a new development centre specialising in new design and high functionality at its Keihin Plant in Japan in order to realise a system able to flexibly adapt to upcoming changes in cockpit design.

AGC's car-mounted display cover glass has been adopted for more than 70 vehicle models (including the Audi A8 and Lexus RX), with total shipments expected to reach 20m units by September 2019.

AGC claims its cover glass for car-mounted displays contributes to achieving a 'sleek, unified dashboard design due to its gentle curve realized by AGC's proprietary 3D curved surface forming technology, and its decorative printing with tones that blend into the surroundings'.

High quality, it says, can be ensured through a fully-integrated production process that covers everything from chemically strengthening glass, to forming, and applying the optical thin-film coating and surface printing that inhibit glare and fingerprints.

Expert analysis

Global light vehicle instrumentation and cockpits market - forecasts to 2034

Global light vehicle instrumentation and cockpits market - forecasts to 2034

This QUBE report from just-auto provides a comprehensive overview of the global cockpits and instrumentation sector, major suppliers, top 14 markets, technology trends and market size forecasts. Use t...read more

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