Over the last decade

Over the last decade, natural fiber reinforced polymer composites have been embraced by European automobile makers especially in the manufacturing of door panels, seat backs, headliners, package trays, dashboards, and trunk liners. Now the trend has reached to other parts of the world like the United States and Asian countries, particularly in Japan. The number of automobiles that have been produced in the last century has rapidly increased due to the modernization of the transportation systems and economic development in Asia, Europe, and United State. Automotive industries throughout the world are continuously trying to optimize cost over quality in order to remain competitive in the market. The application of natural fiber composites is rapidly increasing in the automobile sector1-6 at an annual growth rate of above 20% because of its low density, reasonably acceptable strength and day?by?day lowering cost, non?abrasiveness and safe handling, ease of separation, enhanced energy recovery, CO2 neutrality, biodegradability, recyclable properties, etc. Furthermore, these fiber based composites have the potential of contributing greatly to the automotive manufacturer’s final goal constituting 30% weight reduction and a cost reduction of 20%.7-12