Pontiac Solstice Deck Lid Hinge Benchmark Exercise

Oscar Nespoli and Steve Lambert
Case revision date: 
10 pages (Case Study)

Pontiac Solstice with front and rear deck lids openThe Pontiac Solstice is a two-seater sports car introduced by General motors in 2006. General Motors of Canada supplied a pre-production model to several Canadian Universities for educational and research purposes. The unit delivered to the University of Waterloo has been used for a number of activities, including several benchmarking exercises. Benchmarking is the process of examining an existing product to better understand its design, operation, manufacturing and serviceability. In this case, the front deck lid (or hood, or bonnet) hinge will be examined. The front deck lid provides access to the automobile engine for inspection and maintenance. The Pontiac Solstice engine deck lid is shown in an open position in Figure 1.  Many design requirements were considered when the deck lid and hinge mechanism was designed, including the requirement to provide ready access to the engine, and to ensure that the implemented design was safe, durable and aesthetically pleasing.

The geometry and motion of this deck lid, and the forces acting on it will be examined to explore the design requirements used in its design, and to identify potential areas of improvement. For example, it is possible to replace the deck lids, currently made of steel, with carbon fiber product to reduce weight. This will require reconsideration of the opening mechanism.

Learning objectives: 

The teaching objective of this case is to illustrate kinematic analysis for position and quasi-static forces. The use of computer aided engineering is stressed, through the kinematic and dynamic analysis of the opening of the deck lid, using the commercial program ADAMS. Engineering judgement is exercised in the measurement of geometry and mass, and the estimation of mass properties. The importance of verifying CAE results is stressed. This case is intended for use in ME321 – Kinematics and Dynamics of Machines. 

Key words: 
Kinematics, dynamics, position analysis, force balance, kinematic design
CEAB attributes: 
Use of Engineering Tools; Investigation; Design
Module 01 – Case Study
Module 02 – Solstice Deck Lid Hinge Geometry
Module 03 – ADAMS Deck Lid Tutorial

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