To the Editor:
It was fascinating to learn about General Motors' new aluminum welding technology ("As Ford spends big, GM joins aluminum with simple welds," Nov. 24).
I'm sure it will expedite the incorporation of lighter-weight aluminum in many, if not most, GM vehicles. It should have a significant impact on reducing vehicle weight to increase fuel economy.
There is one important topic not addressed in the story: What's required to perform collision repairs on the new GM vehicles? Ford is requiring its dealers to spend significantly on new body shop equipment and make costly changes to shop layouts to do new F-150 collision repairs.
What will GM's dealers be required to do in their body shops to be able to service the GM-welded aluminum pieces? Will aluminum pieces, such as door panels, have to be replaced rather than repaired? How will it affect repair costs to the insurers and owners?
New technology brings with it many important questions for dealers.
Mission Viejo, Calif.