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Aluminum in Passenger Vehicles—Trends, Implications, and Opportunities

Aluminum in Passenger Vehicles—Trends, Implications, and Opportunities

Executive Summary—Key Findings

OEMs are investing in alternate materials to lower vehicle weight, increase fuel efficiency, reduce CO2 emission, and improve safety and noise and vibration characteristics.

Aluminum in Passenger Vehicles: Key Findings, Global, 2015–2025

Automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are expected to reduce overall average fleet weight by at least 􂀀 kg per year in an effort to meet stringent fuel efficiency and carbon dioxide (CO2) emission goals. By 2025, 􂀀 out 􂀀 OEMs are expected to mass produce at least 1 aluminum-intensive vehicle (AIV).

Audi and Tesla among luxury OEMs and Ford among mass-market OEMs are expected to have aluminum proliferate in 􂀀 to 􂀀 models across several vehicle segments by 2025. With aluminum content expected to reach at least 􂀀 pounds per vehicle (PPV) by 2025, China is expected to be major supplier.

Aluminum is being used more in body in white (BIW) applications, and especially in body structures and closures, where use is expected to increase 􂀀% by 2025. Resistance spot welding, ultrasonic welding, self-pierce riveting, collar joining, and other joining advancements are expected to increase aluminum-to-aluminum and alternate material amalgamation.

Aluminum is expected to become the backbone of OEMs’ multimaterial strategy by 2025 alongside Gen3 steel grades and composites, which also continue to grow. Strategic applications are expected across passenger cars, SUVs, and pickups.

North America and Europe are early adopters of aluminum as a primary material choice in higher-margin vehicles. Advancements in newer grades of aluminum alloys (7xxx and 8xxx series) and their applications in intricate, thin-walled, leak-proof, and fatigue-resistant profiles are expected to further increase use.


  • Executive Summary
    • Executive Summary-Key Findings
    • Executive Summary-Stringent CO2 Emissions Goals, CAFE Targets
      • Table Aluminum in Passenger Vehicles: CO2 Emission and CAFE Targets, Global, 2015-2025
    • Executive Summary-Lightweighting is No Longer a Diet, But a Habit
    • Executive Summary-Aluminum-intensive Cars, SUVs, and Pickups
    • Executive Summary-Aluminum in a Multimaterial Strategy
    • Executive Summary-Key Aluminum Alloys and Target Applications
    • Executive Summary-Exhibit A: Tesla Model S
    • Executive Summary-Current and Future Outlook
    • Executive Summary-Associated Multimedia
  • Research Scope, Objectives, Background, and Methodology
    • Research Scope
    • OEMs Considered in the Scope of this Study
    • Research Aim and Objectives
    • Key Questions This Study Will Answer
    • Research Background
    • Research Methodology
  • Overview of Automotive OEM Material Strategies
    • Automotive Material Demand Evolution
    • Advantages Offered by Alternative Materials
    • Aluminum Usage in Vehicles
  • Key Drivers and Restraints of Aluminum Usage in Passenger Vehicles
    • Primary Driver-US CAFE Standards
    • Secondary Driver-CO2/Greenhouse Gas Emission Norms
    • Tertiary Driver-Crash Impact Regulations
    • Restraint-Gen 3 Steel Grades
    • Restraint-Non-metals Including CFRP
    • Restraint-AIV Repair Costs
    • Other Restraints
  • Aluminum Usage Trends in Passenger Vehicles
    • Material Strategies of Global OEMs
    • Increasing OEM Focus on Aluminum-to-Aluminum Amalgamation
    • Aluminum in Multimaterial Joining
    • Aluminum Usage Trends in Current-generation Vehicles
    • Aluminum Usage in Vehicles
  • Vehicle System and Component-level Aluminum Applications
    • Automotive Industry Aluminum Consumption
    • Aluminum Consumption by Segment
      • Table Aluminum in Passenger Vehicles: Consumption by Segment, North America, 2015
    • Aluminum Applications in Vehicle Systems
    • Key Areas of Aluminum Consumption
    • Body and Closure Aluminum Usage
    • Global Aluminum Production
  • Deep-dive Analysis of Key OEMs' AIVs
    • OEMs' Aluminum Efforts and Focus Areas
    • Exhibit B-Ford Motor Company F-150
    • Exhibit C-Toyota Motor Corp.
    • Exhibit D-Tesla Motors
  • Comparative Analysis of OEM Aluminum Implementation Strategies
    • OEM Focus on Aluminum and Alternative Materials
    • Material Intensity Vehicle Matrix
    • Aluminum Applications
  • Important Supplier Activities in the Aluminum Space
    • Key Aluminum Suppliers and Strategies
    • Exhibit E-Novelis Aluminum Strategy and Deep-dive Analysis
    • Exhibit F-Alcoa Aluminum Strategy and Deep-dive Analysis
  • Key Conclusions and Recommendations
    • Key Conclusions
    • Strategic Recommendations
    • Current and Future Outlook
    • The Last Word-3 Big Predictions
  • Appendix
    • Market Engineering Methodology

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