Alcoa forged aluminium wheels selected for Ferrari 458 Italia

Distinctive lightweight forged wheels sharpen steering and dynamics
By: Tristan Honeywill
 
 
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* Banbury - Oxfordshire - England

Oct. 27, 2010 - PRLog -- Oct 27, 2010 – Alcoa Auto Wheels, a division of Alcoa Wheel and Transportation Products, supplies lightweight forged aluminium wheels for the new and critically acclaimed Ferrari 458 Italia.

The use of forged aluminium wheel technology pioneered by Alcoa ensures that the front wheel weighs just 10.3 kg (22.8 lbs), while the rear wheel weighs 11.5 kg (25.3 lbs), a significant saving compared to a typical cast aluminium wheel and a result that is only achievable with a forging process.

These weights are all the more remarkable in view of the sizes; wheel diameters are increased to 20 inches to accommodate large carbon-ceramic brake discs, and rim widths of 8.5 inches (front) and 10.5 inches (rear) are required by the latest generation of high performance tyres.

Lower wheel mass decreases rotational inertia, meaning forged wheels require less energy to spin up to speed during acceleration. This also helps reduce the gyroscopic effect of high speed rotation, improving steering response and performance. The lightweight wheels also improve grip, traction and braking resulting in better vehicle control and a smoother ride, because Alcoa’s wheels stay in contact with the road better than heavier cast wheels.

“The weight saving possible with Alcoa’s forged aluminium wheels helps to achieve the sharp handling and steering response for which Ferrari is famous,” says Victor Marquez, Vice President and General Manager, Alcoa Auto Wheels.

“As well as styling freedom, Alcoa’s forged wheels offer a quick-to-market, cost-effective weight reduction,” explains Marquez. “We are able to provide new wheel programs rapidly to meet vehicle launch schedules.”

Alcoa is building a growing number of relationships with prestigious OEMs worldwide; its relationship with Ferrari has been built up over several model generations, of which the 458 application is the latest. Wheels for the new Ferrari are forged at Alcoa’s Cleveland, Ohio (US) Works Plant. For more information, visit www.strongwheels.com.

About Alcoa Wheel and Transportation Products

Alcoa Wheel and Transportation Products, headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, serves the commercial vehicle, automotive, and defence markets with products used in a range of applications including cast and forged aluminium wheels, aluminium space frames, specialized vacuum die cast products, niche products such as Dura-Bright® and Dura-Flange® wheels and M-Series™ medium truck wheels. AWTP is composed of three divisions: Transportation Products, Commercial Vehicle Wheels, and Automotive Wheels.  It employs 2,800 people at 30 locations worldwide.

About Alcoa

Alcoa is the world leader in the production and management of primary aluminium, fabricated aluminium and alumina combined through its active and growing participation in all major aspects of the industry.  Alcoa serves the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation and industrial markets, bringing design, engineering, production and other capabilities of Alcoa's businesses to customers. In addition to aluminium products and components including flat-rolled products, hard alloy extrusions, and forgings, Alcoa also markets Alcoa® wheels, fastening systems, precision and investment castings, structures and building systems. The Company has 97,000 employees in 34 countries and has been named one of the top most sustainable corporations in the world at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. More information can be found at www.alcoa.com


Press Contact

Market Engineering                  
43-44 North Bar                  
Banbury, OX16 0TH, UK               
Tristan Honeywill                  
Tel: +44 (0)1295 277 050               
tristan.honeywill@m-eng.com


Sales and Marketing

Alcoa Wheel Products
Hall Place Enterprise Centre
Church Hill, Harbledown
Canterbury, Kent, CT2 9AG
David Yates
Tel: +44 (0)1227 452413
david.yates2@alcoa.com

Images

For copyright reasons, we are unable to distribute Ferrari wheel pictures but please take a look at these stunning wheels on Ferrari’s website. The link below will take you to the 458, then clicking on the white circle shown on the front wheel will give a close-up of the Alcoa forged wheel.  http://www.ferrari.com/English/GT_Sport%20Cars/CurrentRan...
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