Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) is reportedly making a version of its F-150 truck that’s heavy on aluminum instead of steel.
The idea of a lighter body truck is attractive from a gas-mileage perspective, although making the new vehicle is a risky endeavor for Ford.
Aluminum isn’t new in the auto industry. Many car manufacturers use the metal to make hoods, trunk lids, doors, wheels, engine parts and the like. But using the light-weight metal to make a large part of the body of a pickup truck has raised a few eyebrows.
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Mike Shaw, who owns more than a dozen dealerships in Colorado, said his truck buyers might be initially turned off by a pickup that’s built with a lot of aluminum. But he also thinks that many of those same people will eventually come around.
“There is going to be a certain percentage of the people that will bitch and complain, but they will ultimately get that vehicle,” he said. “They may hold off for a little and keep their old ones longer. Then they will buy a new one.”
The truck that Ford’s working on now is scheduled to debut in 2014. It will be about 700 pounds lighter than current models, WSJ reports.
Ford’s F-Series has been around for 65 years and its F-150 is the best-selling pick up in the U.S.