75 3D Printed Parts help Chevrolet achieve over 128747 Km (80 000 Miles) of racing

Two mid-engine Corvette C8.Rs debuted at Rolex 24 at Daytona on Jan. 25, 2020, each equipped with 75 3D-printed parts. All images via Chevrolet

With over 128747 Km (80 000 Miles) travelled, Chevrolet has been able to stand out from the crowd during racings.

For those who do not know, Chevrolet is a brand of General Motors, an early adopter of AM technologies that has recently ramped up its production with 17 Stratasys FDM® 3D printers.

Two all-new mid-engine Corvette race cars – both C8.Rs – are equipped with 75 3D printed parts. They include the oil tank, tank inlet and cap, air conditioning driver cooling box and integrated hydration system, power steering pump bracket and headlight assemblies. Fifty of these parts have been manufactured in-house by GM.

Since then, the C8.Rs have accumulated nearly 80 000 miles of competition in seven races. Corvette Racing has had a dominant 2020 season, taking home five first-place wins and three 1-2 finishes, including the punishing 2020 Cadillac Grand Prix of Sebring.

 “Chevrolet has a long history of technology transfer between our motorsports and production teams, and this is a perfect example of our approach,” said Jim Campbell, GM U.S. vice president of Performance and Motorsports. “GM’s 3D-printing capability speeds up our learning cycles and, in turn, these racetrack experiences help our additive manufacturing team move one step closer to using 3D-printed parts in production vehicles.”

The INDYCAR program has also had great success leveraging 3D printing for the Chevrolet Indy V6. Components in the Chevrolet INDYCAR V6 exhaust system are 3D printed, which helps eliminate failure points in traditional manufactured components while increasing design freedom and reducing cost. Chevrolet INDYCAR engines have run over 60,000 miles since the season kicked off at Genesys 300 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth on June 6, 2020.

Since October 2019, the Silverado race truck has accumulated 900 miles of competition in six races.

Chevrolet also switched to the Camaro ZL1 1LE for the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series, replacing the Camaro ZL1. Chevrolet engineers optimized the aerodynamic performance through extensive, full-scale wind-tunnel testing. Over 500 3D-printed prototype parts were used in testing to develop the new ZL1 1LE body. Additionally, the Camaro ZL1 1LE is equipped with a 3D-printed gear cooling duct, which has accumulated nearly 18,500 miles of competition in 27 races.

By utilizing 3D-printed parts, Chevrolet Motorsports is demonstrating the many benefits of additive manufacturing, including manufacturing efficiencies, mass reduction, parts consolidation, creativity and cost savings,” said Audley Brown, GM director, Materials Engineering, Additive Design and Manufacturing. “3D-printed parts can offer equal strength and durability to cast or milled components, which is critical for product development and design.”

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