General Motors, Ford Motor Co. and DaimlerChrysler used aluminum and composites to build 80-mpg prototypes for the Partnership for a New Generation of Vehicles. The American Iron and Steel Institute wants to prove it can get the same results with steel. The association has hired Porsche Engineering Services Inc. of Troy, Mich., to develop a PNGV-like concept with a steel body; a computer drawing of the concept is shown above. The company also will design a compact car concept, shown at right, similar in size to the Volkswagen Golf. Though steel is heavier than aluminum, the association says it will save weight by merging some vehicle systems - making the engine and fuel tank part of the structure, for example.
Steeling for the future
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