Tesla was just the start. Ford was the next domino to fall. Now, America’s other big auto manufacturer is ready to follow suit. General Motors must think aluminum is a good idea, because a report from the Wall Street Journal states that the company wants most of their truck fleet to have aluminum bodies by 2018.
General Motors Co. GM +0.66% is accelerating efforts to field a largely aluminum-bodied pickup truck by late 2018, under pressure from federal fuel efficiency standards and archrival Ford Motor Co. F +0.17% , according to people familiar with the matter.
The No. 1 U.S. auto maker recently locked-in supply contracts with Alcoa Inc. AA +4.56% and Novelis Inc., which are now working to increase their aluminum sheet production to supply the next-generation GM pickup, the people said. Aluminum sheet for automotive bodies is in such high demand that companies need to order it years in advance.
The push to develop what the industry calls an “aluminum intensive” large pickup marks an apparent change of direction for GM, which has pursued smaller and lighter weight steel-bodied trucks.
The article goes on to state that Chrysler, the other member of Detroit’s Big Three, is looking to increase fuel efficiency by looking at other options: transmission mechanics, axle efficiency, and gasoline options. From our perspective, though, we’re inviting them to come take a look at the aluminum revolution — we think they’ll be pleased with what they find.