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Auto veteran Bob Lutz joins NanoSteel board

Keywords: Tags  NanoSteel, General Motors, Chrysler Group, Ford Motor, steel, high-strength steel, Bob Lutz, Samuel Frizell

NEW YORK — NanoSteel Co. has appointed automotive industry veteran Bob Lutz to its board of directors in a move it says brings big-name support to the company’s 10-year project to develop a new family of high-strength steels.

"Bob’s commitment to the company is a testament to the unique opportunity that our nano-structured sheet steel solutions will bring to the automotive industry," president and chief executive officer David Paratore said in a statement.

Lutz previously held a number of leadership roles in the automotive sector, including executive vice president at Ford Motor Co. and president of Chrysler Corp. He most recently served as vice chairman of global product development at General Motors Corp., from which he retired in 2010 but remains an advisor.

"The experience he brings to the table is so large, it’s a one-person shop as far as offering insights into automotive," Paratore told AMM.

Providence, R.I.-based NanoSteel’s focus is developing a high-strength, ductile steel alloy for commercial use in the automotive industry as companies move toward lightweight materials. The company, which gained an investor in General Motors Ventures LLC in August (, Aug. 6), aims to send material to GM for validation before the end of the year, Paratore said.

Lutz said in a statement that he was impressed with NanoSteel’s design and its implications for auto production.

"The use of NanoSteel’s breakthrough AHSS (advanced high-strength steel) could drive efficiencies across the supply chain by leveraging existing steel infrastructure and parts production," he said.

Lutz told AMM in an e-mail that he was impressed with NanoSteel’s design and its implications for auto production, saying he expects "all major companies will follow suit" if GM uses the new technology.

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