It seems that we aren’t the only ones that have chosen to lose some weight for the New Year. Pickup trucks are now shedding the pounds to become more lightweight too. It’s referred to as “lightweighting”. With a mixture of advanced materials such as aluminum, high-strength steels and composites to help increase the pickup’s maximum payload, towing capacity and fuel economy.
The numbers are already weighing in.The New 2019 Ram 1500 pickup is 225 pounds lighter and the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado is 450 pounds lighter than their 2018 models. Ford started the trend back in 2015 when it switched to an aluminum bed and body for the F-150 Super Duty pickups that shed a whopping 700 pounds. Each automaker is trying different approaches and material combinations to find their desired results.
It seems that Ford’s rivals are not relying as much on aluminum in their diet, but all the big brands have launched lightweighting programs. The 2019 Silverado was introduced with an aluminum hood, tailgate and doors, but 80 percent of its frame is made of high-strength steel. GM is experimenting with other materials such as carbon fibers as well. The redesigned 2019 Ram 1500 also added aluminum to its tailgate, engine mounts and parts of its suspension with 90 percent of the frame high-strength steel.
No matter what combination of materials is used, you can bet that aluminum is going to play a major role by 2020 due to cost. Experimenting with mixed-materials to fill the supporting roles will continue to grow in both strength and affordability over time; which will aid automakers in their lightweighting future.
At Fleetwest we understand the need for lightweight and efficient vehicles. Our innovative service bodies are both lightweight and more efficient than tradition bolt on units. Fleetwest service bodies are 100% transferable even fully loaded with equipment and will universally fit any full-size pickup truck; making them versatile. And that is an optimal combination to reduce your operational cost while improving your productivity.
Start your year off right and light!
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