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ALUMINUM  Smart Developments

              Case Study    Aluminum technologies for the new LS

              02 02         LEXUS LS

    Motor Fan illustrated
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Motor Fan illustrated

    ALUMINUM  Smart Developments

    04       The new LS has the latest structure that uses a considerable   Other carmakers produce inner panels in three parts, but the                                                                                                  ALUMINUM  Smart Developments
             amount of aluminum alloy in the outer panels, and ultra-high
                                                                LS panels are formed as single pieces. This is largely a result of
             tensile strength steel in the frame. In addition to the bonnet,   Toyota’s excellent stamping technology, with aluminum
             trunk lid and front fender aluminum is used for the doors. The   manufacturer UACJ’s backstage support.
             application of aluminum has reduced the total body weight by
             25% compared to the previous all-steel model, and because   Spring-back emerges as a problem when considering changing
             the car has four doors, there is an even greater effect on weight   to one-piece aluminum inner door panels, because of its
             reduction.                                         inferior formability and shape-freezing properties. Most
                                                                European carmakers have stamping lines with five to six
             In general, the inner door panel has a complicated structure, so   processes, but Japanese carmakers have production facilities   LS500
             5000 series alloys are frequently used because of their high   with four processes. One drawing process is sufficient for steel,
             formability. In consideration of dent resistance, 6000 series   but aluminum requires two. This means that other processing   For the new LS body,
             alloys are used for the outer door panels. However, Toyota   has to be carried out by the remaining two processes. The   aluminum alloys are used for
             decided to use  6000 series for both the inner and outer panels   high-level stamping technology which forms aluminum in four   the bonnet, trunk lid, front
             of the new LS.                                     processes has been developed by Toyota Motor.                    fender, suspension tower,
                                                                                                                                 bumper beams and doors.

                          Hiroaki Hashiya                 Tatsuya Higuchi                 Tohru Hioki

                          Assistant Manager               Assistant Manager               Assistant Manager
                          MS Vehicle Quality & Production   Production Preparation Dept.,  MS Stamping Production Engineering Div.,
                          Engineering Div.,               Lexus Management Div.,          Mid-size Vehicle Company,
                          Mid-size Vehicle Company,       Toyota Motor Corporation        Toyota Motor Corporation
                          Toyota Motor Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      High-tensile steel
                                                                                                      (Motorfan Illustrated Vol.138)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                           PHOTO: LEXUS
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