What Kind of Metals Are Cars Made From?

by Hillary Marshall
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a car in a car show image by Gary from Fotolia.com

More goes into the making of a car than meets the eye. A variety of different materials such as metal, plastic, rubber, leather and fabric are used in the finished product. In fact, not just one type of metal alone is used to make a car. Manufacturers use different metals, such as steel and aluminum, for different parts of the car.


Steel is the primary metal used to make most cars. In fact, the EPA suggests that almost 65 percent of the materials used to build the average car are a steel product. Most parts of the car that have to do with steering and suspension are made from steel. Parts of the body, wheels, chassis and frame are also made from steel. Steel is durable and flexible, making it a desirable material in car manufacturing because on impact it bends instead of breaking.

Stainless steel is also used in auto manufacturing. It is chosen primarily because of it's resistance to rust. For this reason, it is often used for bolts, brackets and exhaust parts.


Aluminum is used in the making of the modern car because it is light. In many cases it replaced heavy metals such as iron in car manufacturing because it is has the strength needed for the part without the excess weight. Parts of a car that are typically made from aluminum include the engine and wheels.


Iron is also used to make cars. Iron was used more often in the past and has been used less in modern car manufacturing because it is heavy. That being said, with that weight comes great durability, which is why it was often chosen for engine parts in older cars.


Titanium is an exotic metal that is extremely strong, lightweight and resistant to corrosion from chemical weathering and saltwater. This metal is hard to manufacture, so it is used sparingly. Some car parts that may be made of titanium include intake and exhaust valves.

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