"The 2016 Ford F-150 holds the smallest life-cycle carbon footprint of any full-size truck in the North American market. The F-150 aluminum design is key to Ford’s elevated performance, which not only reduces environmental burdens associated with raw material mining and processing, but with reduced vehicle weight, less power is required to physically move the vehicle..."

The Automotive Science GroupJanuary 2015

Aluminum is Driving Sustainability

Reducing vehicle weight with aluminum increases fuel economy while cutting tailpipe emissions. Lighter vehicles typically consume less energy (fuel or battery power) to get around.

More than just reducing tailpipe emissions, government and auto industry studies confirm that aluminum offers the smallest total carbon footprint among competing materials (full life cycle or “cradle-to-grave”). Later stage operating efficiency improvements like lower tailpipe emissions offset the upfront energy needed to produce aluminum in the initial mining and manufacturing stages.

Ford Motor Company and Magna International conducted a Multi Material Lightweight Vehicle (MMLV) Life Cycle Assessment that found that when comparing two five-passenger sedans, the aluminum-intensive vehicle model is environmentally superior to its steel counterpart. Learn More.
A peer-reviewed life cycle assessment by the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory affirmed using aluminum in new vehicles to boost fuel economy offers the smallest total carbon footprint among competing materials. Specifically, an aluminum-intensive vehicle can achieve up to a 20% reduction in total life cycle energy consumption and up to a 17% reduction in CO2. Learn More.
A materials comparison of magnesium, steel and aluminum for front end parts of U.S. built vehicles, sponsored by the U.S., Canada and China concluded, “…the aluminum design is still better at achieving the breakeven distance from energy use and GHG emissions perspectives within the vehicle life.” Learn More.
The Automotive Science Group honored the aluminum-intensive Ford F-150 with the Best Environmental Performance award for achieving “the highest level of protection for the environment throughout its life-cycle: from raw material acquisition through end-of-life vehicle disposal and recovery.” Learn More.

Aluminum’s Sustainability Advantages

An aluminum-intensive vehicle can achieve up to a 20% reduction in total life cycle energy consumption and up to a 17% reduction in CO2.

For closures and body structures, typically one pound of aluminum replaces about 1.6 pounds of steel. This significantly minimizes the up-front material production impact.

Aluminum is infinitely recyclable without degradation to the material. Recycling aluminum also saves more than 90% of the greenhouse gas emissions associated with primary aluminum production, and requires only 8% of the energy.

The energy needed to produce primary aluminum is down more than a quarter since 1995 and carbon footprint is down nearly 40%. This is equivalent to 37 million barrels of oil saved and 25 million tons of CO2e GHG reduced per year.




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