Strip and sheet for body

You want to build lighter cars? The body offers the greatest potential to reduce weight, as it is the heaviest component. Thus, body-in-white is the fastest-growing segment for aluminium in cars.

It is also the most demanding application: outer body panels need an excellent surface, hang-on parts like doors have to be stiff, and structural components require sheet that allows for quite complex forms.

Rolled aluminium alloys not only are significantly lighter than traditional materials, but also deliver good forming and functional properties - as already proven in many automotive segments.

Key features

  • Great potential in weight-saving
  • Good formability
  • High dent resistance and yield strength
  • Good corrosion behaviour under thermal load
  • High-quality surface finish, free from defects like roping

Which alloy do you need?

Heat-treatable AlMgSi alloys (6xxx series)
In principle, these alloys display no stretcher-strain marks. They attain their service strength during the paint-baking cycle. In Europe, the alloys AA 6016 and 6060/6014 are typically used.

By making special modifications to the manufacturing process – from ingot casting through to subsequent heat treatment in automotive’s dedicated annealing furnaces – and by specifically adjusting the alloy composition, variants with their own individually determined properties are manufactured for a wide range of requirements and applications.

In this way, tailor-made solutions can be supplied, e.g.
+ Fast-hardening, prebaked alloys for use at low age-hardening temperatures
+ Alloys for outer skin components with high requirements on hemming performance
+ Alloys with enhanced forming properties for the manufacture of components with complex geometries
+ High-strength alloys which facilitate weight savings through the reduction of
wall thicknesses

Non-heat-treatable AlMg(Mn) alloys (5xxx series)
These alloys are a cost-efficient alternative to today’s widely used heat-treatable AlMgSi alloys. They can be optimized to stretcher-strain-free qualities for inner, partially visible parts.

Surface treatment
We offer these alloys with special surface topographies to extend the forming limits, furthermore with conversion treatment to strengthen adhesive bonding, and various lubrications to protect the surface and improve formability. 

For which application do you need it?

For outer body parts, exquisite surface qualities are indispensable. In Europe, only heat-treatable alloys are used to accomplish this. Forming and hemming are further key properties.

For inner body components, both heat-treatable and non-heat-treatable alloys can be used. Hydro’s 6016-R alloy meets the highest requirements, especially when the parts undergo long and high-temperature paint-baken cycles. When the paint-baking temperature and baking time are reduced at the OEM to minimise costs and energy consumption, the fast bake-hardening variant of Hydro’s 6016-R is used.

Many inner body components are complex in shape. There, nonheat-treatable AlMg(Mn) alloys show their outstanding forming potential. Typical alloys comprise the stronger Hydro 5182 or the more cost-effective 5754.

For structural applications which require high corrosion resistance and strength, we recommend alloys like Hydro 5918-D. Even when the lacquer surface is damaged or temperature exerts an influence, this alloy guarantees particularly good resistance to corrosion.

Updated: October 11, 2016