A6 Fitment First European Luxury Saloon OE for Alcoa Dura-Bright
When Audi chose aluminium as a major component on the original A8, it turned to Alcoa for assistance in the building off the vehicle’s space frame. The cooperation between the two companies also extends to Alcoa’s wheel products; the new A6 debuted at this year’s Paris International Motor Show, and the new model arrives fitted with Alcoa forged aluminium wheels featuring the company’s patented Dura-Bright technology surface treatment.
The Dura-Bright treatment offers Audi owners two key benefits – easier wheel cleaning and protection against corrosion. Traditional alloy wheels rely on lacquer as a finish and protection against the elements. During heat cycling, brake dust and grime can penetrate the lacquer to create a yellow discoloration or black specks that cannot be removed. Dura-Bright technology penetrates the surface of the wheel to become an integral part of the aluminium itself. It resists peeling, cracking and corrosion.
“It was clear that Audi required a new wheel solution that is durable while retaining a high quality, innovative finish,” explained Mike Parnell, vice president and general manager – Alcoa Auto Wheels. “By staying cleaner longer, Dura-Bright technology wheels enhance a vehicle’s appearance, allowing Audi A6 owners to enjoy their vehicle while lowering maintenance efforts.”
The surface treatment has been offered in the commercial vehicle marketing since 2003, and more recently in the automotive OEM market. Launched into the automotive marketplace in 2007, Dura-Bright technology is now available on several global automotive platforms, however fitment on the Audi A6 signals the first application of the technology for a European luxury saloon.
All Dura-Bright technology wheels are produced by Alcoa’s forged engineering expertise. Alcoa forged aluminium wheels provide increased strength and durability gains and are typically twice as strong as a comparable cast aluminium wheel in crush tests, reports Alcoa. Further, a forged wheel reduces un-sprung weight on a car, maximising vehicle performance, including more responsive steering and braking performance, while reducing weight compared to a similar cast aluminium wheel by over 20 per cent.
“We are proud to work with Audi to provide our eighteen-inch wheel with Dura-Bright technology for the new A6 offering easy to clean maintenance benefits coupled with the strength and light weight advantages of a forged aluminium wheel for improved driving dynamics,” Parnell concluded.