Carbon fiber reinforced plastic is extremely strong, 50% lighter than steel and 30% lighter than aluminum. Because it’s so light and tough, auto makers have been developing concept cars and experimental parts from the material since the 1970s. But it’s expensive and difficult to fabricate, and that’s limited its mainstream use to things like race cars, jet fighters and expensive golf clubs. But now, thanks to dropping prices and new production methods, BMW is planning to do what ...

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