Saving Weight with Aluminum Saves Money
When it comes to designing new passenger cars and commercial trucks, less weight can mean less cost to the manufacturer and, ultimately, to motorists and freight haulers.
As automakers take a more holistic approach to creating more cost-effective, efficient, eco-friendly and safe vehicles, reducing vehicle weight by using more aluminum can by a catalyst for cost savings throughout the vehicle by accommodating smaller engines and consolidating assembly into fewer parts. In fact, as automakers specifically look for ways to reach new fuel economy targets, research shows that substituting strong, light materials in automobiles is the only way to go.
Lower weight vehicles need less fuel or battery power to operate, so smaller powertrains and fewer parts can be combined to drive down costs without sacrificing safety or performance. Aluminum intensive, lower weight passenger vehicles also save fuel, which saves consumers money at the pump. When aluminum is used to reduce commercial vehicle weight, it can generate reduced fuel and maintenance costs, higher payloads, increased durability and higher resale rates.
Aluminum’s Cost Effective Advantages:
- Weight reduction with aluminum is a safe and cost-effective complement to maximize the benefits of all other fuel economy improvement technologies, saving motorists money at the pump.
- No single technology can cost-effectively achieve a 50+ MPG fuel economy target without significant weight reduction (which can be done by using lighter aluminum to avoid less desirable downsizing of vehicles).
- Advanced aluminum body structures in electric vehicles could save up to $3,000 per unit by requiring fewer batteries to move a lighter vehicle.
- Secondary cost savings realized by weight reduction with aluminum offset a significant share of material cost premiums, making aluminum a cost-effective solution.
- Aluminum in automobiles accounts for 5 to 10 percent of scrapped automobiles by weight, but represents 30 to 50 percent of its scrap value.