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Carbon-Fiber Subframe From Magna-Ford Partnership Cuts Weight by 34% and Parts by 87%

Posted By ASC, Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Updated: Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Magna and Ford have announced that their partnership has resulted in the creation of a carbon-fiber subframe prototype that weighs 34 percent less than a steel subframe and that uses just six components as opposed to 45. The subframe consists of two molded composite components and four metal ones assembled using a combination of structural adhesives and rivets.


Lightweighting was amongst Ford and Magna’s goals, but they also wanted the new subframe to offer better crash protection and rigidity. Ford says that its collaboration with Magna will result in greater fuel economy while still ensuring a pleasant driver experience combined with durability, safety, and affordability.


So far, computer modeling shows that the concept is workable. Next, Ford will build new prototype subframes for real-world testing to verify durability and determine the manufacturing protocol to be followed.


Engineers from both Magna’s body and chassis team were involved in the project, leading industry insiders to wonder whether more carbon fiber exterior parts are likely to be designed in the near future. Magna has been a specialist in lightweight materials for several years with the carbon-fiber hood for the Cadillac CTS/ATS-V series having been the first of its innovations to be adopted.

Aside from lightweighting with carbon fiber, Magna is providing OEMs with digital technology including the new EYERIS camera system which will be used in the new Maserati Levante and its CabinWatch system which will allow parents to check what children traveling as back seat passengers are doing without having to risk turning their heads in order to do so.


More info on the cars, trucks & buses segment can be found HERE


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