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Newsroom Nov 15, 2007 Lear Innovations Selected as Finalist and Honorable Mention in 2008 Automotive News PACE Award Competition


SOUTHFIELD, Mich., Nov. 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Lear Corporation (NYSE: LEA), one of the world's largest suppliers of automotive seating systems, electrical distribution systems and electronics products, today announced that its ProTec™ PLuS Self-Aligning Active Head Restraint System was selected as a Finalist and Lear's SoyFoam™ received Honorable Mention in the 14th annual PACE (Premier Automotive Suppliers' Contribution to Excellence) Award competition, which is jointly presented by Automotive News, Microsoft, SAP and Transportation Research Center Inc.

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Lear's second generation ProTec PLuS Self-Aligning Active Head Restraint System is designed to meet the anti-whiplash requirements of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the European New Car Assessment Programme and the new Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS 202a), which goes into effect Sept. 1, 2009. In order to limit head rotation relative to the torso during a rear-impact collision, the U.S. mandate requires automakers to either install in all front-row seats a solution for the dynamic option, such as ProTec PLuS, or a solution for the static option, such as firmer and larger head restraints that are closer to an occupant's head which can cause everyday discomfort.

"Lear's ProTec PLuS dynamic system allows for a more comfortable seating system and greater design flexibility than a static solution," said Don Bernhardt, Lear's vice president of Seat Engineering. "Additionally, ProTec PLuS, if activated, resets itself automatically which provides additional protection to the occupant as well as eliminates the need for service as in the case of competing dynamic products."

Lear's SoyFoam is soybean oil-derived automotive polyurethane developed for in seating, head restraints, armrests, console foam padding and other interior components. This product substitutes petroleum-based polyol with soybean oil-based polyol to produce a more environmentally-friendly foam material.

"Lear's SoyFoam technology is the first to be used in automotive production as a result of Ford Motor Company's decision to use it in the seats of the 2008 model year Ford Mustang," Bernhardt continued. "We are extremely proud to have these innovations recognized in this prestigious competition."

Recognizing superior innovation, technological advancement and business performance, the Automotive News PACE Award is open to suppliers that contribute products, processes, information technology, materials or services directly to the manufacture of cars or trucks. The award is accepted around the world as the industry symbol of innovation.

Lear is a finalist in the product category which recognizes innovations in new products or services or in new product and service development and introduction processes that have significant market impact and act as "game changers" in the automotive industry.

The Automotive News PACE Award also recognizes suppliers' superiority in three additional categories: Product - Europe, Information Technology and Services and Manufacturing Processes and Capital Equipment.

Lear, along with other Automotive News PACE Award finalists, will undergo an extensive review process - including a site visit - by industry, academic and business leaders to select award winners, to be announced at a gala ceremony in Detroit on April 14, 2008.

For complete details of the 2008 Automotive News PACE Award, visit The award is additionally sponsored by OESA, Sprint and WCSX 94.7FM in Detroit, Mich.

Lear Corporation is one of the world's largest suppliers of automotive seating systems, electrical distribution systems and electronics products. The company's world-class products are designed, engineered and manufactured by a diverse team of more than 90,000 employees at 236 locations in 33 countries. Lear's headquarters are in Southfield, Michigan, and Lear is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol [LEA]. Further information about Lear is available on the Internet at

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SOURCE: Lear Corporation

CONTACT: Andrea Puchalsky of Lear Corporation, +1-248-447-1651

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Posted on 11/15/2007

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