AbstractStructural applications that use multi-material structures in the transportation industry have increased in recent years. Weight reduction in order to avoid excessive emissions is the driving force of this trend. The current joining technologies for such complex structures have potential for engineering and performance improvement. This preliminary study shows an alternative joining method for hybrid structures, the so-called Injection Clinching Joining (ICJ) [Abibe et al., J Thermoplast Compos 2011;24(2): 233–49], based on the principles of staking, injection moulding, and mechanical fastening. The main objectives of the paper are to exploit the mechanical behaviour of overlap joints produced by this proposed method and assess its potential as an applicable technology. The measurements used in this research are optical and scanning electron microscopy, X-ray computer microtomography, lap-shear strength testing and in situ strain distribution. Different failure modes were found, depending on the joining conditions. Net tension failure had a brittle and catastrophic nature, while rivet pull-out presented a more desirable slow ductile failure mode. The joint strengths were good, ranging from 35.9% to 88.5% of the base material’s experimental ultimate tensile stress. Although there is a lack of studies on structural staking applications, this paper shows potential for these joining techniques and introduces ICJ as a potential focus of future research.