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Ford's Trade-In: Truck to Use Aluminum in Place of Steel
WSJ ^ | 07/26/2012 | MIKE RAMSEY

Posted on 07/27/2012 2:33:00 PM PDT by Responsibility2nd

Edited on 07/27/2012 2:39:50 PM PDT by Admin Moderator. [history]

ALLEN PARK, Mich.—In this suburb just west of Detroit, Ford Motor Co. is working on one of the biggest gambles in its 108-year history: a pickup truck with a largely aluminum body.

The radical redesign will help meet tougher federal fuel-economy targets now starting to have wide-ranging effects on Detroit's auto makers. But Ford will have to overcome a host of manufacturing obstacles, plus convince die-hard pickup buyers that aluminum is as tough as steel.


(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: Michigan
KEYWORDS: aluminum; automakers; cafe; energy; energypolicy; ford; fordmotor; fordtrucks; greenreligion; manufacturing; physics
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This is a very good article. It's long, but it outlines the risks Ford is taking with their best seller - the F150.

And just why are they taking this chance? The answer is given in the excerpt.

1 posted on 07/27/2012 2:33:03 PM PDT by Responsibility2nd
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To: Responsibility2nd
A mock-up of the new aluminum lightweight-by-700 lb car...


2 posted on 07/27/2012 2:39:42 PM PDT by C210N ("ask not what the candidate can do for you, ask what you can do for the candidate" (Breitbart, 2012))
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To: Responsibility2nd
Along with the aluminum makeover, the new F-150 also is getting a more muscular look, according to one Ford designer.

If you can't actually make it Ford Tough, make it look Ford Tough...

3 posted on 07/27/2012 2:41:05 PM PDT by null and void (Day 1284 of our ObamaVacation from reality - Heroes aren't made Frank, they're cornered...)
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To: Springman; cyclotic; netmilsmom; RatsDawg; PGalt; FreedomHammer; queenkathy; madison10; ...
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4 posted on 07/27/2012 2:41:20 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: Responsibility2nd
Stopping time?? Huge loss of friction....

We put some extra pounds in the trunk in winter time.

5 posted on 07/27/2012 2:41:24 PM PDT by Sacajaweau
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To: Responsibility2nd

Well, as long a the fender wells say “Body By Budweiser” on the inside’ it’ll sell......


6 posted on 07/27/2012 2:42:18 PM PDT by Red Badger (Think logically. Act normally.................)
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To: Responsibility2nd

Similar to what Germany employed to circumvent the tonnage restrictions imposed especially upon them by the 1926 bilateral arms ‘agreement”.

This brought you the so-called ‘Pocket Battleship” the Bismarck, among others.

They sacrificed armour for speed. But guns are faster than ships and it took a pounding and sank.


7 posted on 07/27/2012 2:42:42 PM PDT by Surrounded_too
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To: Responsibility2nd

UPS has been using Aluminum for years, and is now looking at plastic.

http://www.whatisworking.com/2011/06/ups-trucks-made-of-ultra-light-material.html


8 posted on 07/27/2012 2:44:23 PM PDT by foundedonpurpose (It's time for a fundamental restoration, of our countries principles!)
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To: Responsibility2nd

Do they even think they make an aluminum that is as tough as steel?


9 posted on 07/27/2012 2:45:07 PM PDT by DannyTN
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To: Sacajaweau
Stopping time?? Huge loss of friction....

I leaned that lesson in a hurry some years ago when I bought a Festiva. Anti lock brakes and all and it still slid on dry pavement in a hard stop.
10 posted on 07/27/2012 2:45:56 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: Responsibility2nd

11 posted on 07/27/2012 2:46:17 PM PDT by Repeal The 17th (We have met the enemy and he is us.)
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To: Sacajaweau

If those things crash and catch on fire, I bet they will burn hotter than the surface of the sun.


12 posted on 07/27/2012 2:46:57 PM PDT by sinsofsolarempirefan
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To: Responsibility2nd
I instantly thought of New Coke when I read this. They will make a colossal mistake and do great harm to their brand if they do this in my opinion
13 posted on 07/27/2012 2:52:18 PM PDT by HereInTheHeartland (Encourage all of your Democrat friends to get out and vote on November 7th, the stakes are high.)
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To: Responsibility2nd

plus convince die-hard pickup buyers that aluminum is as tough as steel.


It’s not... steel and aluminum don’t mix. Salt eats it worse than steel.

But the truck will be lighter... It might cost them the “longest lasting pick up in America” title.

Guess if I want a new ford I better buy it before the switch.


14 posted on 07/27/2012 2:52:42 PM PDT by cableguymn (For the first time in my life. I fear my country's government.)
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To: Surrounded_too

Bismarck wasn’t a “pocket battleship. Just the opposite, it was a full-sized battleship with increased armor protection. Germany had disgarded the restrictions by the time Bismarck was launched. German warship theory was heavier armor and smaller, more accurate guns. Had they been able to produce sufficient numbers of ships, this might have worked. Bismarck wasn’t sunk by the British which reall pissed them off to this day. She was pounded into a useless hulk, but still floated until her own crew scuttled her. The Brits got their revenge for Bismarck sinking the Hood by leaving over 1,000 German survivors to drown. Fair play and all that, eh, chaps? Naturally, they have a different version.


15 posted on 07/27/2012 2:53:46 PM PDT by ozzymandus
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To: sinsofsolarempirefan
If those things crash and catch on fire, I bet they will burn hotter than the surface of the sun.

You're just looking at the negative side. Look on the positive side - Alcoa closed at $8.45/shr today. Buy, buy, buy!!

16 posted on 07/27/2012 2:54:29 PM PDT by BipolarBob
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To: Responsibility2nd

The Ford F150, if they do it correctly, could be a hit. The reason is the CAFE standard, but FORD will make a truck that AMERICANS will buy.


17 posted on 07/27/2012 2:54:29 PM PDT by ExCTCitizen (Yes, Obama, I had help with my business. MY CUSTOMERS!!)
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To: Responsibility2nd

18 posted on 07/27/2012 2:55:20 PM PDT by I see my hands (It's time to.. KICK OUT THE JAMS, MOTHER FREEPERS!)
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To: Responsibility2nd

On the plus side, no worries about rust in the wheel well or fenders. Sound-wise, Aluminum should aborb and “deaden” any road noise. From a crash-worthines perspective, Aluminum should have minimal rebound, thus absorb the damage better than steel.

On the down side - depending upon how Ford impliments this, the body could be too week for regular heavy use, and painting Aluminum is going to be an issue.


19 posted on 07/27/2012 2:55:41 PM PDT by Hodar (A man can fail many times, but he isn't a failure until he begins to blame somebody else.- Burroughs)
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To: Responsibility2nd

How long before GM and Chrysler get a waver and/or loophole in millage requirements to be able to build a steel bodied truck?


20 posted on 07/27/2012 2:56:00 PM PDT by matt04
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