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OEMs have become material agnostic, and suppliers must pay heed

Shiloh believes steel will remain indispensable in the automotive industry, but there’s still much to be done to ensure it can work smoothly with other metals. By Xavier Boucherat

The increasing presence of aluminium, magnesium, carbon fibre and other composites in the average passenger car means that talk of steel-intensive vehicles is growing ever more redundant. Steel suppliers can no longer assume their offerings will be the go-to choice, as more OEMs adopt a ‘right material in the right place’ approach – if somebody else can offer weight loss or reduced cost without skimping on safety performance, it’s a virtual no-brainer for a vehicle manufacturer.

Accordingly, US-based Shiloh Industries describes itself as material-agnostic. Jim Evangelista, Director of Product Technology, says that this strategy has served the company well since its …

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