Role of steel in the automobile industry
The automobile industry manufactures and sells automobiles like cars, buses, trucks, and other vehicles. It is one of the key drivers of the economic growth of India. One material that forms the backbone of this industry is steel. It is widely used in the auto industry. Approximately 55% of a car’s weight comes from steel and on average, a vehicle weighs 1200kg – so that’s a large amount of steel.
Steel forms a significant part of the automotive industry. Owing to its excellent properties, steel is widely employed in the making of vehicle bodies. Steel is very tough and thus is the go-to-choice for making vehicles. It lends strength and ensures safety. Moreover, steel is cost-efficient along with being light-weight. Steel is also easy to weld and can be reformed easily. All these reasons come together to make steel the most favorable material to be used in manufacturing automobiles.
Let’s take a look at the uses of steel in the making of an automobile:
- Structure of the vehicle: The structure of the automobile makes use of a large amount of high-quality steel. One of the main reasons that steel is used in the making of body frames is because of its ability to absorb the impact energy produced in a crash. This ensures safety. It also keeps the overall structure lighter, yet sturdy. As the steel has high tensile strength, it works in favor of the vehicle and enables it to withstand tremendous pressure and force.
- Propeller shaft: High-quality steel is used for the construction of a propeller shaft. It is because the propeller shaft should be powerful enough with a high wear-resistant property so it can tolerate bending and torsional load.
- Seat frame: The seat frame too utilizes steel. The reason being, steel is strong and this makes it possible for the seat to withstand everyday rigors. Moreover, steel can be easily formed into the desired shape for comfort.
- Exhaust Tubes: These too are again made of steel.
From the total amount of steel used in an automobile, 34% of it is applied in the body structure, panels, trunk closures, and doors. Apart from that, the drive train makes use of 23% of the steel. Another 12% is used in the suspension. The rest of the steel is utilized in the making of the fuel tank, wheel, steering, and braking system. Thus, steel forms an integral part of the automobile industry.