headline press information

Date 21st December 2010 / www.procarton.com

Smart speedster made of carton


A lot of things have been made from carton, but never a car. An innovative German company has made the sheer impossible a reality and given a Smart a chassis and interior made of carton. The car was the sensational attraction at the Luxepack in October in Monaco. With a bit of luck you may be able to see it at one of the next packaging exhibitions or a Smart presentation.

For download in print quality, please click on the photo.

 “We wanted to set ourselves a real challenge to show what cartons can do and after many discussions we decided to try to replace the main panels of a Smart Car with cartons. The initial objective was to create an exceptional eye-catching presentation at the Luxepack in Monaco“, said Steffen Schnizer, chairman of CD Cartondruck.

Smart were convinced immediately and provided a “fortwo“ and all  the necessary  CAD drawings. The parts were made from recyclable carton made by the Gmund company.  The Berlin design artist Sarah Illenberger was responsible for the creation. Together they designed the type of material they needed, the colours that would work well, the strength characteristics they needed and the way the whole project would be achieved. A number of tests with different designs were carried out: a decision was made to use not only carton board, but folded cartons from the start.  The designer explains her work on Youtube (click here).

The biggest challenge was that the cartons needed to replace the main panels in the car, yet retain the integrity of the structure. Now, all plastic parts are made of carton board and the car is fully functional.  In all they used over 7.000 cartons in four different shades of green. Not only was the outer chassis composed of thousands of cartons, even the rear view mirror and the wing mirrors, the rims, dashboard and foot mats of the spectacular and unique specimen were made of carton.  In the wing mirrors even the mirror itself was replaced with foil laminated material so that it still functioned well as a mirror but was made predominantly of paper and board.

“Plastic and foam parts could well be replaced by the considerably more environment-friendly cartons using the right production processes, particularly for the interiors of cars “ muses Holger Wingenfeld of the Research and Development department at Cartondruck  with a careful look at the possible future of automotive engineering.

The car will not only be on view at packaging exhibitions. Smart are so delighted, that they want to use the carton car themselves on trade shows.   In parallel to the Paris Automobile Show, the Smart could already be viewed at the „smart urban stage“ on 29. and 30. September 2010 in Paris.  Marc Langenbrinck, Managing Director Smart Brand and Head of Sales & Marketing:„“What we wanted to demonstrate with this project is, that a Smart isn’t  „made of paper“, but can leave a lasting impression when using unusual materials. We have always gone new roads to show the variety that design offers as well as to underline the special environment-friendliness of the Smart.“

“The project was met with considerable enthusiasm:  the motivation and pioneer spirit of all employees was impressive“, says Schnizer. “In the beginning we only had parts of the car on our premises to keep the project secret for as long as possible. The work was done in special shifts.  We wanted to stretch the boundaries to show that the flexibility of the material we work with offers endless possibilities, to show that carton board and folded cartons offer surprising and sustainable possibilities of finishing if used intelligently.“

Smart Car

Smart Car.

Smart Car

Over 7.000 cartons.

Smart Car

Exterior mirror.

Smart Car

Car wing.

Suzanne McEwen +43 1 218 6918 mcewen@procarton.com
Background Pro Carton is the European Association of Carton and Cartonboard manufacturers. Its main purpose is to promote the use of cartons and cartonboard to brand owners, the trade as well as designers, the media and politicians as an economically and ecologically balanced packaging medium.