When we think of Gorilla Glass, the first products that come to mind are usually smartphones, tablets, and hybrids. Gorilla Glass provides a thin, smooth surface for us to glide our fingers across while also being strong and lightweight. Not content with being hamstrung into the mobile sector, Corning has reached out to other market segments to push its products. Luckily for Corning, the folks in Dearborn came calling when they were looking for a lightweight windshield for the upcoming Ford GT supercar.
The Ford GT will use a Gorilla Glass Hybrid for both the windshield and the rear glass panel that puts the vehicle’s glorious 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 on display. While a traditional laminated windshield is comprised of two layers of annealed glass that flank an inner, thermoplastic binding agent, the Gorilla Glass Hybrid takes a different approach.
Instead, the innermost layer will be made of advanced Gorilla Glass and an advanced noise-absorbing thermoplastic interlayer will form the center. The outer layer will still use annealed glass. Ford says that the use of Gorilla Glass Hybrid for the windshield and rear engine cover makes both parts 32 percent lighter than their more traditionally-constructed counterparts. In the case of the Ford GT, 12 pounds were saved in total. In addition to being lighter, the Gorilla Glass Hybrid windows laminate is also up to 50 percent thinner than more traditional automotive glass.
“Ford recognized the significant value of these innovative light-weighting technology and committed significant resources to quickly get it qualified for production applications,” said Corning CEO Wendell Weeks. “We worked with Ford to develop a glass that successfully withstood thousands of hours of durability testing and is now being used in a Ford production vehicle. We are excited to introduce this game changing technology to the market.”
Although 12 pounds might not seem like much in the grand scheme of things, weight is the enemy of high performance vehicles. And with Ford looking to trim weight in all possible areas without comprising safety, it should come as no surprise that the company looked to the tech industry for a solution.
The Ford GT’s is constructed primarily of lightweight aluminum and carbon fiber, features a twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V6 that generates over 600hp, and sends power to the rear wheels via a 7-speed dual-clutch Getrag transmission. Although we doubt you’ll be fiddling around with the infotainment system much in a hardcore car like the Ford GT, techies will be happy to learn that the vehicle features the latest Sync 3 system.
As for pricing, the Ford GT is expected to be cost around $400,000 when it launches next year.