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Why Automotive Manufacturers Are So Focused on Lightweightin

time:2016-08-09 source:未知 click: second
The fuel economy race is on as automotive manufacturers prepare for the 2025 Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards.
The Annual WardsAuto survey, sponsored by DuPoint Automotive, found that the majority of automakers are focusing on lightweighting and engine efficiency to meet the 2025 CAFE requirements.
 
The survey respondents are employed by system, component or parts manufacturers, automakers, engine or engine-service companies or in automotive-related industries. This diverse group is made up of engineers, designers, marketers and managers.
 
Of 514 respondents, 63 percent indicated that their companies were pursuing lightweighting and the use of lightweight structural materials to meet CAFE standards. 56 percent reported that their companies were pursing engine efficiency programs.
 
44 percent identified the powertrain and chassis as the top two systems targeted for lightweighting.
Regarding the materials used in lightweighting, the most relied upon materials to meet CAFE standards according to the survey are aluminum (25 percent) and multi-material solutions (21 percent).
 
Advanced composites, engineered plastics and advanced high-strength steel were the top second tier choices, with the three materials combined accounting for 39 percent of respondents’ choices.
 
“It’s no surprise to learn that lightweighting and the use of lightweighting structural materials continue to top the list of strategies the industry remains focused on,” said Brian Fish, NA automotive marketing manager, DuPont Performance Materials. “Lightweighting can be applied to virtually every component and part.”
 
Concerning the mid-term review of the 2025 CAFE standards—scheduled for next year—87 percent of respondents believe that the standards will either remain the same or become more stringent. 90 percent believe that lower gas prices combined with slow sales of fuel efficient, low-emissions vehicles will have a significant impact on programs designed to meet CAFE standards.
According to the light-duty vehicle CAFE and greenhouse gas emissions standards, vehicles must achieve 163g/mile of CO2 by 2025. This is equivalent to 4.3L/100km (54.5 mpg) if stated strictly in terms of fuel efficiency.
 
Is this a reasonable expectation? Will automakers succeed in meeting CAFE 2025 standards?