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Aluminum Top Hat Provides Automakers a Lighter, Sustainable Alternative

© by Alumobility

Alumobility released the results of its newest study, which demonstrates that an aluminum automotive top hat can offer significant weight savings compared to steel, while meeting or exceeding automakers’ performance criteria. Furthermore, automakers can utilize a range of aluminum alloys for the top hat (the upper structure of a vehicle’s body-in-white).  Introduced at Automotive Circle’s annual EuroCarBody conference, the study showed that an aluminum top hat achieved a 42% weight savings compared to the reference top hat, the current Audi e-tron® electric SUV, which uses advanced and ultra-high-strength steels.

“Our latest research verifies that aluminum can provide automakers a strong, sustainable alternative to steel for the vehicle’s top hat, which is a significant portion of the body structure,” said Mark White, executive director of Alumobility. “Further, the aluminum top hat can meet or exceed performance criteria while using the same package space as steel, offering an opportunity for weight savings that translates into improved fuel economy and lower emissions on an internal combustion engine vehicle, or greater performance and range or reduced battery size for electric vehicles.”

The study also confirmed that an aluminum top hat would require fewer components and joints than its steel counterpart, helping to reduce the time and cost of vehicle assembly.

Additional highlights of the Aluminum Top Hat study include:

• Performance attributes were met or exceeded for various load cases
• Obscuration and entry/egress were maintained
• Latest forming and joining technologies were utilized

Alumobility conducts technical studies to help automakers utilize aluminum automotive body sheet to fulfill the promise of a lighter, more efficient, more sustainable mobility future. This summer, ARO, Atlas Copco, and Sika joined the organization as downstream partners focused on joining technologies that enable the use of aluminum.

Additional details on the top hat study are available at

About Alumobility

Launched in January 2021 by founding members Constellium and Novelis, Alumobility is a global ecosystem of leading aluminum and downstream technology partners that supports automotive manufacturers in creating lighter, safer, smarter and more sustainable vehicles. The non-profit association conducts technical studies to help advance the adoption of aluminum automotive body sheet (ABS).

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