CHICAGO Automakers are increasingly looking to aluminum
as they try to reduce the weight of cars and trucks to meet
more stringent U.S. fuel-economy standards, according to one
Aluminum is the leading metal for engines and wheels and is
quickly gaining ground in hoods, trunks and doors, the Aluminum
Association said in a recent release, citing a study by Troy,
Mich.-based market research firm Ducker Worldwide LLC.
Evidence of those gains has been on display at the 2013 North
American International Auto Show in Detroit this week, where a
host of cars and trucks use more aluminum than before and
deploy the metal in more innovative ways, the association said.
Among them is the 2013 Honda Accord, which features an aluminum
hood, subframe and rear bumper; the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado
pickup, which has an aluminum hood as well as aluminum
suspension and engine components; and the 2014 Maserati
Quattroporte, which has body panels made from aluminum, the
Reducing weight with aluminum allows automakers to
cost-effectively make vehicles that go farther on a gallon of
gas, helping them meet new fuel-economy standards,
Randall Scheps, chairman of the associations Aluminum
Transportation Group and marketing director for
Pittsburgh-based Alcoa Inc., said in a statement.
Automakers are looking to boost aluminum use in the average
vehicle from 327 pounds in 2009 to 550 pounds by 2025, the
Arlington, Va.-based association said.
Aluminum and steel have long battled for automotive market
share, with steel historically dominating the sector.
Steelmakers contend that advanced high-strength steels (AHSSs)
may prove more alluring to automakers working to cut the weight
of vehicles (amm.com, Oct. 31).