All car manufacturers are looking for ways to design more fuel-efficient cars. Because of rising awareness of human-induced greenhouse gases and other environmental concerns, the automotive industry is facing tough new standards from around the world that call for minimizing environmental impact. Reducing vehicle weight is one important way for the industry to pass these standards.

The European directive for end-of-life vehicles

Every year, end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) generate between 7 and 8 million tonnes of waste in the European Union. EU Directive 2000/53/EC aims to make the dismantling and recycling of ELVs more environmentally friendly. It sets quantified targets for reuse, recycling and recovery of the ELVs and their components.

The 2015 targets call for at least 95% reuse and recovery. Meeting these requirements is largely the responsibility of automotive manufacturers, who must make smarter choices for their applications to comply with these directives and with stringent emissions regulations.

Advanced high-strength steel helps the auto industry comply

Steel is successfully reinventing itself to help the industry. And new, innovative steel types like advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) are poised to take the lead. Not only do they enable safer, lighter weight body designs, but they help improve fuel economy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions at little or no extra cost to manufacturers or consumers.

For example, engineers are replacing conventional steels with AHSS for the body-in-white (BIW) to reduce the overall weight of the vehicle. Thanks to this weight savings, the powertrain can be downsized to achieve the same vehicle performance as that of vehicles using heavier, conventional steel in their structures. 

This reduction in weight means less steel is needed for each vehicle — and less emissions from the production of steel itself. Fuel savings also decrease emissions from driving the vehicle.

Docol steel for leaner, greener cars

One of the strongest AHSS in the world, Docol® steel can help car manufacturers meet the industry’s demands to reduce emissions while still obtaining five-star crash test ratings. Docol’s high strength-to-weight ratio means that thinner steel can be used without sacrificing strength, so you can significantly cut weight, boost fuel efficiency, improve driving performance and cut your costs.

To increase fuel efficiency and reduce CO₂ emissions, many cars use a blend of lightweight materials. This mix of materials often makes a car less recyclable and can be more time consuming for dismantlers.

By using an AHSS like Docol steel in a higher percentage of car components, car manufacturers can both lower vehicle weight and increase the percentage of recyclable parts. Docol is 100 percent recyclable, can be easily processed and formed into complex shapes and can drastically reduce the component weight.

Read about using Docol steel in different applications.