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Auto industry's big shift to aluminum

Auto industry's big shift to aluminum

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As automakers look for lighter materials to improve fuel economy, Alcoa's director of automotive marketing, Randall Scheps, predicts that demand for aluminum within that sector will be at least twice as strong by 2025.

Photo: Audi

"We have every car maker calling us, wanting to increase their aluminum content, wanting to start new R&D projects about how they can convert bodies from steel to aluminum, wanting to convert hoods and doors from steel to aluminum," he says.

Scheps believes that this transition will more than double aluminum's overall rate of consumption in vehicle fleets from 11.5 million tons in 2011 to 24.8 million tons by 2025. BMW, among other manufacturers, has steadily been increasing its use of the metal in recent years.

In an effort to meet the growing demand, Alcoa has invested $300 million in expansion projects at its Davenport, Iowa plant.

Source: Automotive News