Use of advanced high-strength steel higher than predicted in 2017

With more than 60 steel-intensive vehicles being featured at auto shows in 2017, the Steel Market Development Institute noted last week that use of advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) has been 10 percent higher than predicted in each of the last four years.

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AHSS was used in every segment of the auto market, including the high-demand sport utility vehicle (SUV) and crossover utility vehicle (CUV) markets. The 2018 Chevrolet Traverse, for example, weighs 300 pounds less than earlier model years due to the use high-strength steel.

“With so many new steel-intensive vehicle debuts across key vehicle segments, it truly reinforces how AHSS is driving innovation across the industry and helping automakers reach their lightweighting targets,” Jody Hall, the vice president of the automotive market for the Steel Market Development Institute, said.

The growth trajectory of AHSS continues to outpace projections. A study by Ducker Worldwide projected that 234 pounds of AHSS would be used per vehicle in 2014, but 254 pounds of AHSS steel was used per vehicle that year.

“There are more than 200 grades of innovative AHSS available to automakers today,” Hall said. “This allows engineers to apply the right grade in the right location for exceptional occupant protection, durability and crash energy management.”