Charger XL: A Lightweight Materials Development Vehicle 760203
The substantial development efforts made by the steel and aluminum industries have resulted in high strength-to-weight ratio materials that can be employed to achieve significant vehicle weight reduction. This total vehicle weight reduction is the sum of the initial weight savings attributable to lightweight material substitution and the iterative weight savings resulting from component weight interactions. The theoretical concept of vehicle interactive weight reduction was presented in a previous work.
The present work reviews this theoretical concept and presents an experimental application: Charger XL, a lightweight materials development vehicle. Charger XL is 630 lb. (286 kg) lighter than its current, standard production counterpart. Lightweight materials substitution accounts for 375 lb (171 kg) while the interacting savings accounts for the remaining 255 lb (115 kg). In addition to a review of the theoretical weight reduction analysis, the current work includes a review of Charger XL materials, the details of the resulting weight savings, and a discussion of potential energy savings.