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Audi Selects Alcoa Wheel’s Dura-Bright(R) Technology for New A6

October 10, 2008

Audi AG has selected Alcoa to supply forged aluminum wheels with Dura-Bright(R) technology surface treatment for the new 2009 Audi A6 recently debuting at the Paris International Motor Show.

Dura-Bright(R) technology enhances the image of the vehicle and the ownership experience by making the wheels easy to clean while protecting against corrosion. Dura-Bright(R) technology is the latest innovation in aluminum from Alcoa, who first helped Audi pioneer the lightweight aluminum space frame on the original A8.

“It was clear that Audi required a new wheel solution that is durable while retaining a high quality, innovative finish,” explains Mike Parnell, Vice President and General Manager – Alcoa Auto Wheels. “By staying cleaner longer, Dura-Bright(R) technology wheels enhance a vehicle’s appearance allowing Audi A6 owners to enjoy their vehicle while lowering maintenance efforts.”

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(R) technology penetrates the surface of the wheel to become an integral part of the aluminum itself. It resists peeling, cracking and corrosion while offering a premium finish in keeping with Audi’s vehicle design philosophy.

Alcoa’s proprietary Dura-Bright(R) technology 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(R) technology by Alcoa is now available on several leading Global automotive platforms. Fitment on the Audi A6 signals the first application of Dura-Bright(R) technology for a European luxury sedan.

In addition, all Dura-Bright(R) technology wheels are produced by Alcoa’s forged engineering expertise. Alcoa forged aluminum wheels provide increased strength and durability gains and are typically twice as strong as a comparable cast aluminum wheel in crush tests. Further, a forged wheel reduces un-sprung weight on a car, maximizing vehicle performance, including more responsive steering and braking performance, while reducing weight compared to a similar cast aluminum wheel by over 20 percent. Additionally, CO2 emissions are lowered and fuel economy is enhanced due to the weight reduction.

“We are proud to work with Audi to provide our eighteen-inch wheel with Dura-Bright(R) technology for the new A6 offering easy to clean maintenance benefits coupled with the strength and light weight advantages of a forged aluminum wheel for improved driving dynamics,” concludes Parnell.

The launch of Dura-Bright(R) technology with Audi follows on from Alcoa’s Sixtieth Anniversary of developing, producing and supplying forged aluminum wheels to the global automotive and commercial vehicle industries. 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 defense markets with products used in a range of applications including cast and forged aluminum wheels, aluminum space frames, specialized vacuum die cast products, niche products such as Dura-Bright(R) and Dura-Flange(R) wheels and M-Series(TM) medium truck wheels, as well as a variety of other aluminum components for these markets. 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 (NYSE:AA) is the world leader in the production and management of primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum 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 aluminum products and components including flat-rolled products, hard alloy extrusions, and forgings, Alcoa also markets Alcoa(R) 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




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