Published on 16th Jul '12 22:15
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Here are some notes on car wheels that we put together a few years ago as part of a university project. These notes give some insight into the history, manufacturing processes, materials and design considerations relating to car wheels.
The first light-alloy sheet wheels were used in Daimler-Benz and Auto-Union racing cars in the 1930s. In the 1960s, Porsche began the batch production of sheet wheels, which consisted of a wheel rim and nave. The first high-volume production of sheet wheels in Europe started in 1979 for Daimler-Benz cars destined for the USA.
Through further development of the production process for wheel rims and naves, the manufacturing costs were reduced markedly so that an aluminium sheet wheel has been produced in large numbers for the BMW 5 Series since 1995
Using aluminium wheels on passenger cars began with the upper class or flagships models in order to give them a distinctive personal touch.