When engineers designed the Ford GT, they faced the best kind of design challenge: create without limits. Knowing they had the untapped potential of the EcoBoost engine as the beating heart of their creation, the Ford Performance design team set out to optimize every piece of the vehicle to yield unparalleled performance.
One way to achieve that lofty goal? Taking light-weighting to another level. First, we take a step back in time to the 2005 Ford GT, which featured a lightweight aluminum alloy body, which helped reduce weight while also improving performance.
Ford engineers asked themselves – what if we applied this type of body to our top-selling F-Series trucks? Fast-forward a decade, and Ford changed the pickup industry by delivering an innovative, lightweight aluminum-alloy body for the F-150, later to be joined by Super Duty trucks and the all-new 2018 Ford Expedition.
We’ve seen the benefit of lightweight material in the F-Series line. Greatly improved acceleration, handling, and fuel efficiency, going lighter also means having more room for the latest technology like the class-exclusive Pro Trailer Backup Assist.
Today’s trucks are lighter but more capable than ever, putting their mass to better use by reinvesting weight into the frame or simply shedding it altogether. For example, with a lighter chassis, the latest F-Series trucks are able to transfer weight savings directly to the payload, resulting in increased hauling and towing power. And despite losing a lot of weight, the all-new Expedition will feature best-in-class towing capability.
It all goes back to light weighting breakthroughs made alongside the Ford GT. Now, Ford engineers are able to strategically implement lightweight materials like high-strength aluminum alloys – the same kind essential to spacecraft and aircraft – resulting in increased performance across the board.
The lightweight revolution is well under way. The benefits are clear – lighter-weight materials in our vehicles, from aluminum to carbon fibre, allow for greater efficiency as well as better allocation of that mass.
Put on your engineering hat and tell us which Ford vehicle could benefit from aluminum or other lightweighting materials. Make your suggestions in the comments below or on Ford Canada’s Facebook page!