Performance and progress
We launched 13 products for the automotive industry in 2014, many of them developed in partnership with our major customers. We extended our iCARe® range of electrical steels that improve the driving range of electric vehicles by enhancing the efficiency of the traction engine. The Usibor® and Ductibor® steel ranges were extended with new variants. Usibor® was specifically developed to help manufacturers meet their weight reduction targets and so comply with emissions regulations, while Ductibor® adds crash resilience. The weight reductions provided by these steels contributed to Peugeot’s 308 model winning Car of the Year 2014. Fortiform® is a new product range which could help cut the weight of some parts of an average vehicle by a further 20%, without compromising safety or performance.
Meanwhile the new ‘door ring’ solution we engineered with Honda and Magna was recognised in four awards in Europe and the US. This new door ring replaces a multi-piece spot-welded component with one single, high-strength unit, making it stronger, safer, lighter and more cost effective.
We also launched a significant new variant of the S-in-Motion® range for pick-up trucks, which drew on the extensive lifecycle analysis work done by our researchers, and could reduce a typical truck’s weight by up to 23%.