Aluminum frame is 40 percent lighter than steel frames of same size
LOUISVILLE, KY, March 26, 2015 -- Lightweight, high-performance metals leader Alcoa (NYSE:AA), in collaboration with Metalsa, a global supplier of light and commercial vehicle and chassis structures, today introduced a lightweight, all-aluminum commercial truck frame at the Mid-America Trucking show in Louisville, Kentucky.
Still in development, the lighter weight frame will reduce truck weight by over 40 percent compared to steel frames, saving nearly 900 pounds per vehicle, increasing fuel efficiency and payload. Additionally, the frame’s increased stiffness will double rigidity, enabling a smoother ride. The aluminum frame also offers superior corrosion resistance compared to steel, prolonging the vehicle’s life span.
“The lightweight truck frame will allow fleets to reduce fuel consumption, increase payload without compromising durability.” Mark Vrablec, President, Alcoa Aerospace Transportation & Industrial Products (ATI).
“Our customers wanted an aluminum frame that would provide 40% weight savings with equivalent performance to steel, and we knew the pathway to that was combining our knowledge of commercial vehicle design with Alcoa’s expertise in lightweight metals,” said Sean Fleming, VP Technology, Metalsa commercial vehicles.
Experts at the Alcoa Technical Center worked with Metalsa to develop the new frame over the past two years. Demonstration projects are underway to qualify the product with customers. Existing equipment and tooling is being used to allow manufacturers to seamlessly transition to the aluminum frame, with little or no additional capital expense. The frame is expected to be available in 2018, produced using metal from Alcoa’s Global Rolled Products business.
A global leader in lightweight metals technology, engineering and manufacturing, Alcoa innovates multi-material solutions that advance our world. Our technologies enhance transportation, from automotive and commercial transport to air and space travel, and improve industrial and consumer electronics products. We enable smart buildings, sustainable food and beverage packaging, high performance defense vehicles across air, land and sea, deeper oil and gas drilling and more efficient power generation. We pioneered the aluminum industry over 125 years ago, and today, our approximately 59,000 people in 30 countries deliver value-add products made of titanium, nickel and aluminum, and produce best-in-class bauxite, alumina and primary aluminum products. For more information, visit www.alcoa.com, follow @Alcoa on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Alcoa and follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Alcoa.
About Metalsa S.A. de C.V.
Metalsa, a subsidiary of Grupo Proeza, manufactures structural components for the light and commercial vehicle markets. With its high technology processes of hot-forming, roll-forming, hydro-forming, stamping, assembly and painting, Metalsa portfolio includes light duty frames, space frames, suspension modules, body structures, safety systems, hinges, transmission modules and fuel tanks for passenger cars and light trucks as well as chassis frames, side rails and cross members for heavy trucks and buses. Founded in 1956, the company has presence in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, China, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, South Africa, Thailand, Turkey, United States and a joint venture in the United Kingdom. Metalsa distinguishes itself by offering quality, differentiated service and innovation, competitiveness and customization to each customer. Metalsa has approximately 12,000 employees globally. For additional information, please visit www.metalsa.com.
This release contains statements that relate to future events and expectations and as such constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include those containing such words as “estimates,” “expects,” “potential,” “should,” “will,” or other words of similar meaning. All statements that reflect Alcoa’s expectations, assumptions or projections about the future other than statements of historical fact are forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, statements regarding growth opportunities for aluminum in commercial vehicles; the potential benefits and advantages of new technologies, materials or processes; the expected timing for commercial availability of the new all-aluminum commercial truck frame; and Alcoa’s strategies, outlook, and business and financial prospects. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties and are not guarantees of future performance. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements include: material adverse changes in aluminum industry conditions; unfavorable changes in the markets served by Alcoa, including the commercial transportation market; failure to advance or successfully implement, or to realized expected benefits from, new technologies or innovative products, including, without limitation, the new all-aluminum commercial truck frame, whether due to changes in the regulatory environment, competitive developments, failure to meet customer specifications or qualifications, or other factors; the business or financial condition of key customers, suppliers, and business partners; and the other risk factors discussed in Alcoa’s Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2014 and other reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Alcoa disclaims any intention or obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statements, whether in response to new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable law.