Magna announces new active air dam

ATLANTA, GA – Magna is adding another product to its line-up in the battle for fuel efficiency – an active air dam to be released in 2018.

The dam will be available as an option on new trucks through Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), and will automatically retract for ground clearance or when not in use.

Magna global product line developer Tony Povinelli says the parameters for the amount it retracts will be set by the OEM during installation, so the device will know intuitively when to automatically stow away. No driver interaction is required.

The product follows Magna’s 2016 release of an active grille shutter, also available as an option on new trucks produced by several OEMs, including Freightliner, Navistar, Daimler, Volvo and Paccar.

Magna says the grille has been shown to increase fuel efficiency by up 3%, reducing emissions, and adding up to one mile per gallon – and customers are responding. The company is on track to produce more than 2 million of the items in 2017.

Both products increase fuel efficiency through drag reduction, a technique Magna estimates could save fleets an average of US $1,000 per truck per year.

The company also took the opportunity to show off its latest test product, a carbon fiber subframe it’s currently testing for passenger vehicles through a partnership with Ford.

The carbon fiber subframe reduces the number of parts traditionally used in a subframe from 45 to just six, and reduces the weight of the subframe by 34%.

Magna hopes the tests will lead to lighter fuel-efficient frames, not just for passenger vehicles, but for medium- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles as well.

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