Solihull aluminium manufacturingAluminium rolling company Novelis is setting up a network of bases to increase product development specifically for the automotive industry. Its customer solution centres (CSCs) will be located close to OEM plants in North America, China and Europe and will be used to encourage the use of aluminium in applications from car doors and electric battery enclosures to full body-in-white design.

“Novelis’ CSCs will provide an environment to demonstrate product concepts, simulate customer processes and performance in use, as well as leverage data to educate stakeholders throughout the supply chain about elements ranging from forming to costing,” the US company stated.

In addition to supply chain, material and design work, the CSCs will seek to ensure closed-loop recycling systems are in place, with the aim of encouraging greater use of alloys with higher recycled content to help curb CO2 emissions and establish more secure supply chains.

Pierre Labat, Novelis’ vice-president of global automotive, commented: “The automotive industry is entering a period of transformative change and relying on partners to provide solutions to help them build the cars of the future. By creating another new way to engage with automakers, along with a physical space that inspires innovation, we are better prepared to make our customers more successful.”

Company president and CEO Steve Fisher added: “The global auto industry is experiencing disruptive change in nearly every dimension, including electrification, autonomy and accelerated development times. To meet rapidly evolving demands, we are developing the CSCs to help our customers innovate with aluminium for tomorrow's lighter, safer and better performing vehicles.”

The first CSC will be located in Novi, Michigan.