Nissan plans to use more Advanced High Tensile Strength Steel (AHSS) in its vehicles, up to 25% of vehicle parts (by weight) in its new models, starting in 2017, as part of its efforts to reduce vehicle weight. The automaker said that by doing this, it could reduce the weight of its vehicles by up to 15% by using AHSS and changing the vehicle’s body structure.
Beyond weight reduction, the company said it developed 1.2 gigapascal (GPa) Ultra High Tensile Strength Steel with High Formability steel (which the company developed by working with other auto industry suppliers in Japan) and is using this material in its Infiniti Q50, which goes on sale in North America this year. Using this material, and eventually AHSS, means the automaker can use less material per vehicle and that it can use existing production lines without the need for major modifications to them.
Nissan said its overall vehicle lightweighting efforts are part of its Nissan Green Program 2016, which aims for a 35% improvement in corporate average fuel economy, compared with a 2005 baseline, by 2016.