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Alcan Aluminum Recognized as 'Best of the Best' by Customers In Automotive Industries' Quest for Excellence Awards

Alcan Automotive : 08 August, 2000  (Company News)
The AlumineeringSM efforts of Alcan Global Automotive Products have earned the aluminum producer recognition as one of the 'best of the best' automotive suppliers in Automotive Industries' third annual Quest for Excellence awards.
The current issue of Automotive Industries magazine reports that Alcan was the top-ranked company in the aluminum category of the prestigious awards program. The publication teamed with PricewaterhouseCoopers to survey more than 1,200 professionals in the auto industry. Respondents evaluated suppliers on quality, price, delivery, service/response and innovation. Alcan will receive the award at a ceremony on August 16 at the Detroit Institute of Arts.

'Receiving this award is an extreme honor because it comes from the very people we work to serve our customers,' said Donald Macmillan, president of Alcan Global Automotive Products. 'I believe that Alcan won this award because of our focus on building partnerships with our automotive customers to better understand their needs and provide them with aluminum solutions.'

'We use the term AlumineeringSM to describe our expertise, technology and proprietary alloys which customers can tap to make high-volume aluminum structures and body panels that reduce vehicle weight without sacrificing performance characteristics or safety,' said Macmillan. 'Over the past five years, our customers have produced more than eight million vehicles featuring one or more body panels made of our high-performance alloys.'

Alcan has signed multi-million dollar, long-term supply agreements with both General Motors and Ford Motor Company.

A recent project with General Motors to develop robust and cost-effective aluminum liftgates for the 2000 Yukon, Suburban and Tahoe has further advanced the technology and acceptance of automotive aluminum. Alcan worked with GM to develop innovative techniques to stamp, paint and spot-weld panels in this complex, high-volume assembly the first aluminum liftgate designed and built in North America.

At Ford, Alcan's ongoing partnership provides the opportunity to help the automaker meet its commitment to raise the fuel economy of its sport utility vehicles (SUVs) by 25 percent in five years, Macmillan noted. The 2001 Ford Explorer, set to debut later this year, will be one of the most aluminum- intensive vehicles in the Ford fleet.

The Lincoln LS, the Motor Trend Car of the Year, has 40 percent of its body covered by Alcan from the hood and trunk lid to the aluminum front fenders and features numerous other aluminum parts in the chassis and suspension systems. This helps the LS achieve the nearly 50/50 weight distribution that contributes to the car's European-like driving characteristics.

Alcan also worked closely with both Ford and GM on their hybrid-electric concept cars, respectively the Prodigy and the Precept, which were unveiled earlier this year. Designed to achieve up to 80 miles-per-gallon, both of these vehicles feature aluminum unibody structures covered by aluminum body panels made from Alcan's proprietary sheet alloys.

Alcan Global Automotive Products' parent company, Alcan Aluminium Limited, is in the final stages of merging with the Swiss-based algroup, a recognized leader in European automotive aluminum supply. The merger is expected to be completed this year and will give Alcan an even greater global reach and product offering.

'Alcan is already a leading supplier to the North American auto market,' Macmillan said. 'When we are joined with algroup, the number one European supplier, it is clear that Alcan will be the global leader in automotive aluminum.'
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