Lightweight cars are a dime a dozen nowadays, particularly in the high-performance super car arena. Mainstream brands are starting to obsess over their lineup’s waistlines now, too. We can guess that more stringent fleet fuel economy standards have done a lot to motivate automakers into trimming some fat. However, there’s also the classic “Because we can” argument to account for, and that seems to be the primary notion for Ford’s Lightweight Concept.Photo: Autoblog
The blue oval has already made waves this year by announcing the all-aluminum 2015 Ford F-150, one of the first instances of a non-premium car made out of the lightweight metal. Using these materials has saved the best-selling pickup truck about four hundred pounds. This car wears the Fusion shell, but it weighs as much as a Ford Fiesta. Autoblog is nice enough to tell us that the lightest Fusion currently available to the public weighs 3323 pounds, while a Fiesta weighs just 2537 pounds. So how were the Ford engineers able to shave off 800 pounds?
Ford’s Senior Technical Leader of Research and Innovation, Matt Zaluzec, explains in this video:
The Ford Lightweight Concept is meant as an in-depth study on how to reduce the weight of nearly every component of the vehicle. They used aluminum brake rotors, a composite oil pan, carbon fiber wheels, and other mixed materials to reduce weight across the board. The goal is to one day produce a mass-market lightweight vehicle that will be available to the public. Looking at this concept car, we can’t help but hope that day isn’t too far off. They’ve done this to the Fusion, too, which as a hybrid vehicle already gets nearly double the gas mileage of most other cars on the road. Now just imagine what would happen if they took this approach and applied it to a Mustang.
Ford is consistently bringing exciting ideas to the table in a way that is accessible to consumers at all levels. If you want to keep up with more of their amazing developments, we encourage you to keep up with us here at the Leith Ford blog.