Gorilla® Glass for Automotive Windshield Featured in Ford GT | Tough Automotive Glass | Corning

"This announcement proves that technical glass will play a new and important role in the future of automobiles." - Doug Harshbarger, business director, Auto Glass Solutions

Corning recently teamed with Ford on the first production automotive windshield for Corning® Gorilla® Glass for Automotive on the Ford GT – proving once again that light, tough, and optically advantaged Gorilla Glass reaches well beyond consumer electronics.  In addition to the windshield, Gorilla Glass for Automotive tough automotive glass is also deployed in two other windows on the Ford GT, the Gorilla Glass rear window and the bulkhead, a separation window of tough automotive glass that is located behind the seats and in front of the rear engine.

“This announcement proves that technical glass will play a new and important role in the future of automobiles,” said Doug Harshbarger, business director, Auto Glass Solutions.  “Gorilla Glass toughness enables robust reliability and reduced weight in ways that cannot be obtained from conventional glass, but still meets or exceeds regulations and consumer expectations for comfort and aesthetics.  It is also a transformational material for lightweight glazing.”  

U.S. and European Union auto makers are under intense pressure to improve the average mileage of their fleets. The average mileage of the U.S. automobile fleet has to reach 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. In the European Union, fleets must achieve 57.6 miles per gallon by 2020. Companies that fail to comply may face steep fines. Automotive OEMs can meet these requirements by replacing thicker and heavier conventional glass with lightweight Gorilla Glass for Automotive.  This tough automotive glass would help improve fuel efficiency without compromising strength, safety and aesthetics. Gorilla Glass for Automotive windows can weigh anywhere from 20-60% less than conventional automotive windows. And while this may not equate to much in comparison to the overall weight of the car, auto makers will take weight reduction anywhere they can get it because every gram counts. 

Last year, Ford and Corning collaborated on the Multi-Material Lightweight Vehicle (MMLV) Concept Car.  This concept car used Gorilla Glass for Automotive tough automotive glass in the windshield and side windows and enabled more than 30 percent reduction in glazing weight which, along with other new light weighting materials, reduced the car’s weight by 700 pounds.

In addition, Gorilla Glass for Automotive was designed into the BMW i8 as an acoustic glass partition to shield sound from the rear engine.  In 2014, Corning received BMW’s Supplier Innovation Award in the lightweight construction category as a result of this partnership.

“The overall experience drivers have with their vehicles is really important,” Doug said. “Gorilla Glass for Automotive in this type of application not only manages the sound, but also provides great optical advantages for the driver when looking out of the rear view window.”

Automakers are also looking at replicating the convenience and experience most consumers have with their electronic devices within the interior of their cars by putting more and more functionality into touchscreens to make time spent in vehicles more productive, customizable and entertaining.

Gorilla Glass for Automotive is currently used as a touchscreen cover glass in high-end vehicles, and provides a broad palette for other creative interior design uses within the automobile.

“Touch displays are becoming much more common in today’s cars,” Doug said. “Gorilla Glass for Automotive delivers an experience that consumers are used to with their mobile devices while providing a toughness to last the entire life of the vehicle.”

The future of the automotive industry will continue to evolve with the consumers’ needs for comfort, safety, convenience and design. Corning is making its mark on the industry by bringing new innovative applications to meet these needs.  Glass is no longer simply something for us to look through when we’re riding in our cars and trucks. It’s a high-end material that helps make the ride smoother, quieter, more convenient, and easier on the environment.