The all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler, part of by FCA US LLC, has achieved a significant weight reduction through the use of lightweight, high-strength aluminum in key areas of the body — including the doors, hinges, hood, fenders, and windshield frame — contributing to its improved fuel economy and overall capabilities. Novelis has been selected to supply sheet for these closures, which will be produced at its facilities in Oswego, New York and Kingston, Ontario.
“Novelis is proud to offer our unrivaled production capabilities and extensive technical expertise to one of the world’s most iconic vehicles,” said Marco Palmieri, SVP and president, Novelis North America. “We work alongside our customers from program development to launch to meet the industry’s evolving needs.”
The 2018 Wrangler builds on a sculptural design aesthetic of the traditional iconic Wrangler, having a rugged exterior design with a wide stance and larger windows for better outward visibility. In addition to the use of aluminum in its closures, magnesium is used in the swing gate. Other ways the Jeep engineering team looked to reduce weight included using hollow track and stabilizer bars, aluminum engine mounts and steering gear, and a larger, lighter master cylinder. The all-new model is 200 lbs lighter than the previous version and gas mileage is expected to rise by three miles per gallon, according to the automaker.
A key aspect of the Wranger’s design is its removable doors, which are now 14 lbs lighter compared to previous models due to their aluminum construction. This will make it easier for customers to remove or reattach the doors to the frame.
“It couldn’t have been done without the use of aluminum,” Scott Tallon, director of the Jeep brand (Trucks.com). By incorporating aluminum into this design, FCA US joins a number of automakers that are turning to aluminum not only for its lightweighting capabilities, but also for its benefits in improving vehicle performance, agility, and safety.
Demand for automotive aluminum is expected to rise according to the 2017 Ducker Worldwide survey that projects aluminum content in North American passenger vehicles, particularly light trucks and SUVs, will increase 42% from its 2015 level by the year 2028. Today, more than 200 different vehicle models feature Novelis aluminum.