The Steel Market Development Institute (SMDI) – a business unit of the American Iron and Steel Institute – is pleased that the record-setting cold weather in Detroit hasn’t cooled steel’s hot streak, as the 2014 North American Car and Truck/Utility of the Year (NACTOY) truck award winner again features a significant amount of advanced high-strength steel, which offers significant light-weighting benefits at a lower cost.
The winning truck – the Chevrolet Silverado – was announced during a news conference at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
According to General Motors, the Silverado’s updated frame, such as the main rails and major cross members, are made from high-strength steel. Further, the cab structures incorporate high-strength steel in the A-pillars, B-pillars, roof rails and rocker panels. Ultra-high-strength steel is also used in the rocker panels and underbody in anticipation of new shallow-offset crash tests. In all, about two-thirds of the cab structure is made from high-strength steels.
“It’s an exciting time in the automotive industry, as automakers evaluate vehicle components for light-weighting potential to meet industry needs, while also balancing customer preferences and safety expectations,” said Ron Krupitzer, vice president, automotive applications for SMDI. “It’s no surprise that in the case of the Silverado, those solutions were advanced steel. We congratulate and applaud General Motors on their noteworthy win and adaptation of new steel grades and processing technologies that reduce mass, while maintaining strength and enhancing safety in a cost-effective and eco-friendly manner.”
According to the NACTOY Organizing Committee, the winning vehicles were judged and selected by a jury of 49 automotive journalists from the United States and Canada who represent magazines, television, radio, newspapers and websites. The awards are designed to recognize the most outstanding vehicles of the year. Jurors evaluate the vehicles on factors including value, innovation, handling, safety and driver satisfaction. Eligibility requirements dictate that the vehicles up for consideration must be “all new” or “substantially changed” for 2014.