Revolution through evolution

The ContiTech Power Transmission Group has developed a timing-assembly belt, which works where otherwise a chain would have operated. Namely, inside the engine bay, where hot engine oil with aggressive pollutants is squeezed at high pressure from the pump sump to the pistons, connecting rods and camshaft.

Instead of breaking down in such a challenging environment, the rubber belt really comes into its own: In extensive tests, the new material mix has proved to be not only ultra-durable but also more resistant to soot, solvents and other non-metal substances in engine oil.

The resilience of the new product generation calls for a rethink. “Our state-of-the-art drive belts are designed to last the entire lifetime of the engine – without having to be changed”, said Ralf Berger, Head of Key Account Management and Application Engineering.

His words are backed up by relevant studies from world-renowned engine developers FEV, based in Aachen, Germany. And Hermann Schulte, Head of Research and Development, concludes: “In the long run, a beltdriven valve control will always work more precisely than a chain-driven one because chains stretch more than our modern fibre glass and rubber belts, which has an effect on valve timings.” The resulting wear and tear, sub-optimal engine operations and increased fuel consumption are not things car manufacturers welcome.