The new generation 2015 Ford F-150 has been much debated because of one key aspect – the automaker swapped high strength steel for military grade aluminum – in a bid to lower the car’s weight and reach new standards for the fuel economy.
Aluminum industry experts think that most automakers – at least in the US – would soon follow Ford, although today they are still in a “wait-and-see” stage. A study commissioned by the Aluminum Association’s Aluminum Transportation Group envisions that 75% of all pickups would choose aluminum over the next ten years.
According to a report, made by consulting and research firm Ducker Worldwide, the manufacturers could get numerous advantages, from increased fuel economy and lower emissions to an increase in both performance and payload capacity.
“The numbers tell a powerful story of aluminum’s explosive growth across the automotive sector,” said Tom Boney, chairman of the Aluminum Association’s Aluminum Transportation Group. “Within the next ten years, seven out of 10 new pickups produced in North America will be aluminum-bodied, and so too will be more than 20% of SUVs and full–sized sedans,” he adds.
Because the study predicts that by 2025 no less than 18% of all vehicles made in North America would have the global demand for the lightweight metal in sheet form jump from 200 million pounds in 2012 to 4 billion pounds by 2025.