Automakers are increasing efforts to reduce vehicle weight, optimize internal combustion engines and electrify vehicles to meet proposed Corporate Average Fuel Economy Standards (CAFE), according to results of the 2012 WardsAuto survey sponsored by DuPont. Results were released during the Center for Automotive Research’s Management Briefing Seminar in early August.
Nearly 700 subscribers to industry-leading publication WardsAuto responded to the survey designed to track the impact of 2025 CAFE changes. If adopted, the new regulations establish milestones on the way to doubling fuel economy and cutting emissions in half, compared to 2010 model year vehicles.
“These aggressive goals require urgent development and adoption of higher efficiency technologies,” said Chris Murphy, DuPont global automotive industry director. “We’re on a steep trajectory to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and reduce CO2 emissions. Getting there requires strong collaboration throughout the globe and across the value chain.”
For its part, DuPont developed a global collaboration network to link industry need to more than 9,500 DuPont scientists and engineers located in more than 150 technical centers around the world. Further, DuPont organized its automotive materials science and global development teams to focus on lightweighting, engine efficiency, bio-based solutions, electrification and alternative drive systems to help the industry develop low-emission, fuel-efficient vehicles without compromising performance, safety, comfort or cost.
“These are not discrete but interconnected solutions,” said DuPont Global Automotive Technology Director David Glasscock, drawing an example from hybrid and electric vehicle traction motors. “Lightweighting, for example, is more than replacing metal components with plastic components,” he said. “For example, using DuPont™ Nomex® papers and electrical insulation systems enables greater output from smaller traction motors, which require smaller support brackets to fit into a smaller system and deliver weight savings throughout the vehicle. That secondary gain is why today ‘every gram counts.’”
View the news release.