Chrysler Group Joins International, Multi-Partner Project to Explore Wider Use of Weight-Saving Alloys

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Chrysler Group Joins International, Multi-Partner Project to Explore Wider Use of Weight-Saving Alloys

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  • $3.9 million total investment ($2.5 million from Canadian government sources; $1.4 million from four industrial partners, including Chrysler Group)
  • Goal to leverage weight-saving properties of aluminum, magnesium alloys for wider use in vehicle production
  • Improvements sought within context of existing manufacturing processes to accelerate adoption, while controlling cost
  • Three-year project taps global resources of project partners
Friday, October 25, 2013 - 2:00pm

CAMPAIGN: Environmental and Social Responsibility

CONTENT: Press Release

HAMILTON, Ontario, Oct. 25, 2013 /3BL Media /PRNewswire/ -- Chrysler Group LLC has signed on to a three-year, $3.9 million project supported by the Canadian government to explore ways to leverage the weight-saving properties of aluminum and magnesium alloys for vehicle production.

The project was announced today by the Honourable Greg Rickford, Canada's Minister of State forScience and Technology.Chrysler Group is one of four industrial partners making in-kind contributions totaling $1.4 million. The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), the lead agency within Automotive Partnership Canada (APC), an initiative that supports industry research at Canadian universities and government laboratories, will invest $2 million.

The remaining funds will come from CANMET, an agency of Natural Resources Canada that works with the energy industry, academia and environmental stakeholders on clean energy research and advanced technology development.

"There is no silver bullet to improve vehicle fuel economy, so Chrysler Group is actively exploring every technology that shows promise," said Tony Mancina, Head of Chrysler Group's Automotive Research Development Centre. "Proliferating the use of strong, lightweight materials such as aluminum and magnesium is among the most promising avenues to reduce the energy demand on vehicle powertrains. Reductions in energy demand are key contributors to improved fuel economy."

Work will be centred at McMaster University, whose researchers will co-ordinate activities with support from Ryerson University in Toronto and the University of Trento, in northwestern Italy.The partnership also will benefit from access to Fiat Group's Italy-based research and development arm, Centro Ricerche Fiat S.C.p.A.

The partnership will explore ways to improve the strength and corrosion resistance of aluminum and magnesium. Importantly, researchers will seek to align such improvements with existing casting methods, so the enhanced alloys can be integrated more readily with the vehicle production process, and with less added cost.

Chrysler Group currently makes innovative use of both aluminum and magnesium. Every Ram 1500 full-size pickup, the company's top-selling vehicle, features an aluminum hood; while the SRT Viper supercar boasts a structural dashboard component that is the largest single piece of magnesium found in any production vehicle, anywhere in the world.

About McMaster University
McMaster University, one of four Canadian universities listed among the Top 100 universities in the world, is renowned for its innovation in both learning and discovery. It has a student population of 28,000, and more than 159,000 alumni in 139 countries.

About Automotive Partnership Canada
Automotive Partnership Canada (APC) is a partnership of five federal research and granting agencies under the Industry Canada umbrella. It provides research funding to support significant, collaborative R&D activities that will benefit the entire Canadian automotive industry. APC's mission is to support R&D that will help drive the Canadian automotive sector to a greater level of innovation.

NSERC is a federal agency that helps make Canada a country of discoverers and innovators for all Canadians. The agency supports some 30,000 postsecondary students and postdoctoral fellows in their advanced studies. NSERC promotes discovery by funding more than 12,000 professors every year and fosters innovation by encouraging about 2,400 Canadian companies to participate and invest in postsecondary research projects

About Fiat Research Center (CRF)
CRF was established in 1978 with headquarters in Orbassano (Turin) as a focal point for research and is a recognized center of excellence at the international level. Its mission is to improve the Group's competitiveness through the development of innovative products, processes and methodologies. All research activities are carried out in coordination with the Group's technical areas and operating regions. CRF draws on a broad array of technical skills, covering all automotive engineering disciplines, together with state-of-the-art laboratories for testing powertrain systems, analyzing materials and electromagnetic compatibility, conducting noise and vibration analyses and driving simulations. Centro Ricerche Fiat counts more than 900 employees and owns 2.296 registered patents.

About Chrysler Canada Inc.
Chrysler Canada Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Chrysler Group LLC. In addition to its assembly facilities, which produce the Chrysler Town & Country, Dodge Grand Caravan, and Ram Cargo Van in Windsor, and the Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger, and Dodge Challenger in Brampton, Chrysler Canada operates an aluminum casting plant in Etobicoke, a research and development centre in Windsor, and has sales offices and parts distribution centers throughout Canada.

About Chrysler Group LLC
Chrysler Group LLC, formed in 2009 from a global strategic alliance with Fiat S.p.A., produces Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram, SRT, Fiat and Mopar vehicles and products. With the resources, technology and worldwide distribution network required to compete on a global scale, the alliance builds on Chrysler Group's culture of innovation, first established by Walter P. Chrysler in 1925, and Fiat's complementary technology that dates back to its founding in 1899.

Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., Chrysler Group's product lineup features some of the world's most recognizable vehicles, including the Chrysler 300, Jeep Wrangler, Dodge Challenger and Ram 1500. Fiat contributes world-class technology, platforms and powertrains for small- and medium-size cars, allowing Chrysler Group to offer an expanded product line including environmentally friendly vehicles.

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Keywords: Technology | Canada | Chrysler Canada Inc. | Chrysler Group | State forScience and Technology | Weight-Saving Alloys

CAMPAIGN: Environmental and Social Responsibility

CONTENT: Press Release