Automakers Shed the Pounds to Meet Fuel Efficiency Standards

by Kevin Bullis
MIT Technology Review
February 20, 2013

Automakers are putting some of their best-selling vehicles on a diet in a race to meet strict new fuel-efficiency regulations that will kick in by the middle of the next decade.

The trend has automakers introducing lighter vehicles and embarking on demonstration projects designed to carve hundreds of kilograms off their most popular vehicles. Last month, for example, GM received major awards for its new Cadillac ATS sedan that weighs 3,315 pounds (1503.7 kilograms), making it one of the lightest vehicles in its class, thanks in large part to an all-aluminium hood, magnesium engine mounts, and other lightweight materials.

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