Carbon Fiber: Is it safe?

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Carbon fiber, the very words evoke beauty, strength, agility, and lightness. The very thought of installing a CF component causes the gearhead in us to mentally salivate thinking of the benefits. Owing to its unique properties and advantages, carbon fiber has become the norm for exotic cars as well as race cars.

Seeing how the car we drive is not too far removed from a race car or exotic (said totally with tongue in cheek!), carbon fiber appears to be the most popular choice when trimming curb weight is foremost in our minds.

A variety of CF parts are available ranging from doors to fenders, trunk lids, hoods, spoilers, hardtops, and many more being churned out by boutique tuners to satiate the wide demand. Several of them have rather high standards of manufacturing and ensure quality is maintained. Quality though comes at a steep price and, if you are on a budget, you can always by a replica of a part made by a boutique shop. No matter your budget, you can always find a part to suit your liking.

The question that arises though (in our esteemed editorial minds) is why people go all out on a carbon fiber binge? Is it because of the cleansing effects it can have on one’s wallet? There is no question that CF parts are the way to go when building your car for the track. Every millisecond counts in racing and weight saved lends very well to setting a fast lap, but if your primary intent is to install CF only for the looks and prestige and the daily commute is where you set your fast lap, is this a wise choice at all?

Carbon fiber components are essentially racing components and, as such, may not have been crash-tested and approved by regulatory bodies in your country. Will they keep you safe and protect you if you happen to get in a crash on public roads? How strong are these components in terms of crash safety when compared to the OEM parts that were engineered with safety from the outset?

The above also seems to be the questions asked by our member phonedrn8 in the Modifications and Parts forum. Do you have an answer for him? Are carbon fiber components designed to keep you safe on public streets?

S2000 Forums-> Carbon Fiber Crash Test

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