(Source: Ford Motor Company)
Lightweight materials bring the weight of the Fusion in line with the subcompact Fiesta

Ford has made extensive use of aluminum in the 2015 Ford F-150 in order to reduce total vehicle weight by as much as 700 lbs compared to the previous generation model. While the ladder frame chassis of America’s best-selling vehicle is still made out of high-strength steel, 95 percent of the F-150’s body structure is made from “high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloys.”
Ford is looking to apply some of the same lessons that it learned with the ’15 F-150 to its mainstream cars, although some of the technologies that it is investigating might take a few years to reach production. 
The Ford Lightweight Concept (which is based on the Fusion midsize sedan; base curb weight 3,431 lbs) uses advanced materials to reduce the weight of the vehicle by 25 percent. As a result, the Ford Lightweight Concept weighs roughly the same as the subcompact Ford Fiesta sedan (base curb weight 2,628 lbs with an automatic transmission).
Some of the weight saving technologies used in the Ford Lightweight Concept includes:
  • Hybrid chemically laminated windshield
  • Polycarbonate windows
  • Composite coil springs
  • Carbon fiber seat frames
  • Carbon fiber instrument panel
  • Aluminum brake rotors
  • Carbon fiber composite oil pan
  • Carbon fiber wheels 
Matt Zaluzec, Senior Technical Leader for Ford’s Research and Innovation Center, notes that “Light-weighting doesn’t come for free” and that Ford looks to offset the higher price of using more exotic materials by “consolidating parts and using next generation manufacturing processes.”

“Consumers today want better fuel efficiency, but they also want more technology and features in the car, which usually adds weight to the vehicle,” said Raj Nair, Ford’s Group VP for Global Product Development. “A focus on light-weighting will be fundamental to our industry for years to come, and we are investigating many advanced materials applications as possible solutions for weight reduction in our vehicles.”
Given the drastic weight reduction that makes the Ford Lightweight Concept comparable to the Ford Fiesta, we should likewise see similar fuel economy if such materials were used in a future iteration of the Fusion. That would mean city/highway/combined fuel efficiency ratings of 32/45/37 mpg when using the 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine.

Source: Ford

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