PSA considers partnerships with aluminum suppliers to built lighter cars

Article by Christian A., on September 9, 2011

As part of a plan to build vehicles that are lighter, PSA/Peugeot Citroen SA may be partnering with aluminum suppliers, according to PSA CEO Philippe Varin at the Metal Bulletin aluminum conference in Paris.

He said that the automaker is considering new partners as it believes that it could achieve the larger use of aluminum in its cars only if could build global and mutually beneficial partnerships. He added that PSA is thinking of having strategic supply relationships with suppliers of commodities, plastics, and composites.

Using aluminum may allow the PSA to achieve its target of a 200kg reduction in vehicle weight. Varin explained that Peugeot has global partnerships with car parts suppliers but it has yet to have ties with raw material suppliers. The automaker seeks to cut the car’s weight by helping it meet European carbon reduction regulations by 2020, says Autonews.

He said that 35 years ago, the average weight of its cars was 800kg. But it has now ballooned to 1,250kg. PSA aimed to reverse the trend by dropping 100kg from each of its next two generations of models.

He said that by using a greater portion of aluminum, which makes up about 100kg in the overall weight of its cars, Peugeot may be able to reduce its vehicle weight by 150kg. What the automaker needs to work on now is finding a better value for aluminum, which is still more expensive than steel.

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