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October 5, 2004
Alcoa Partners with Visteon on First Commercial Applications of Aluminum ''Slip-in-Tube'' Drive Shaft
FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 5, 2004--Alcoa (NYSE:AA)
Alcoa Automotive announced today its participation in the first, large-scale commercial application of Visteon's aluminum "Slip-in-Tube" drive shaft technology on the 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee. This drive shaft design enhances noise-vibration-harshness performance and reduces weight while also improving vehicle maintenance and reducing warranty issues associated with transmission oil leakage.
"We are very pleased to be a member of the Visteon team delivering a performance advantage to Chrysler Corporation on their 2005 Grand Cherokee," according to Dave Dobson, president of Alcoa's Engineered Products business. "The successful combination of the Visteon's Slip-in-Tube design with Alcoa's retrogressively heat-treated seamless aluminum tube and extruded universal joint yokes has created a successful new product for both companies."
Slip-in-tube technology is well suited for an all-terrain vehicle such as the Jeep Cherokee because it offers driveline flexibility over various terrains and in a variety of acceleration and braking conditions. Previous slip-between-centers drive shaft designs featured heavier components, which led Visteon to engineer a lightweight, all tubular design that was both cost effective and enhanced vehicle dynamic stability.
"This led Visteon to a partnership with Alcoa where we were able to extend the forming limits of our tube via the development and application of retrogression heat treating. In addition, this technology also enhances the strength of our tube while preserving the precise dimensions required for this new drive shaft design," Dobson told a group of journalists gathered at the opening of Alcoa's new Automotive Center in Farmington Hills, MI.
About Alcoa Automotive
Alcoa automotive products are designed to enhance driving experience by improving a vehicle's performance, comfort and convenience, safety and styling. Alcoa's automotive products also have helped customers create revolutionary advances that have successfully repositioned entire brands. Easier opening and closing, electronic distribution systems, improved functionality, better visibility, reduced squeaks and rattles and more interior room are benefits car makers gain from Alcoa's innovative automotive products. In addition, many of the safest autos in the world feature Alcoa products in their crash management systems and crumple zones, side-impact beams and engine cradles. Alcoa automotive products also offer customers the opportunity to differentiate their products with fresh design and eye-catching appeal.
Alcoa is the world's leading producer of primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum and alumina facilities, and is active in all major aspects of the industry. Alcoa serves the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation and industrial markets, bringing design, engineering, production and other capabilities of Alcoa's businesses to customers. Alcoa also markets consumer brands including Reynolds Wrap(R) foils and plastic wraps, Alcoa(R) wheels, and Baco(R) household wraps. Among its other businesses are vinyl siding, closures, fastening systems, precision castings, and electrical distribution systems for cars and trucks. The company has 120,000 employees in 42 countries and has been a member of the Dow Jones Industrial Average for 45 years and the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes since 2001. More information can be found at www.alcoa.com