Ford Motor Company today unveiled its Lightweight Concept vehicle, which uses advanced materials to explore future weight-reduction solutions that could improve performance and fuel efficiency while reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
The vehicle represents the latest phase of Ford’s research into developing sustainable technology solutions that are affordable for consumers and can be produced in large volumes across the product lineup, according to the automaker. Previously, this research led to weight reductions of up to 700 pounds in the all-new F-150. The 2015 F-150 sheds weight through the use of high-strength steel and aluminum, enabling it to tow more, haul more, accelerate quicker, and stop shorter – all with improved gas mileage.
The automaker said that light-weighting is a key component in its Blueprint for Sustainability, which integrates sustainability into the business plan for the long-term preservation and enhancement of environmental, social and financial capital. The introduction and incorporation of lightweight materials into vehicle construction helps meet the goal of reducing weight to achieve better fuel economy for consumers while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Ford’s research into improved efficiency through weight reduction with advanced materials including new metals, alloys and composites began more than 25 years ago.
Along with other fuel-efficiency technologies, Ford said its light-weighting is fundamental efforts to stabilize carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere at 450 parts per million – the level many scientists, businesses and governmental agencies believe may avoid the most serious effects of climate change.