Material choices key as vehicles shed weight

May 08, 2012 | 01:13 PM | Corinna Petry

Tags  vehicle weight, aluminum, steel, Ducker Worldwide, Richard Schultz, Corinna Petry

DEARBORN, Mich. — A combination of high fuel prices and stricter emission standards will result in the widespread adoption of cleaner, more-economical vehicles using hundreds of pounds less raw materials than current vehicles, according to automotive materials analyst Richard Schultz.

"When gas prices soared in the past, consumers thought it was an aberration. They now believe that high prices are the norm," said Schultz, managing director at Troy, Mich.-based Ducker Worldwide LLC.

The auto industry initially resisted the new corporate average fuel economy standards, but they cooperated when they realized consumers wanted efficiency, too, Schultz said at AMM’s 5th Automotive Metals Conference in Dearborn. "Sixty-six percent of buyers choose fuel economy as a top consideration when buying a vehicle." ....

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