Ford testing out room-sized 3D printer to manufacture auto parts

Posted at 7:54 AM, Mar 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-07 12:20:46-05

Need a spoiler? Just print one. 

Ford Motor Company is looking at the different ways a 3D printer can manufacture large-scale car parts, according to a company news release.

The gadget, built by Stratasys, is capable of printing a wide variety of parts regardless of shape or length, the automaker says.

It’s being tested at the Ford Research and Innovation Center in Dearborn.

The method could eventually be used for manufacturing personalized parts or even items needed for prototypes.

One of the benefits the automaker points to is weight.

A part printed out of plastic instead of cast iron could result in better fuel efficiency for vehicles.

Ford says 3D printing could help with low-volume manufacturing. Think race cars. It's not quite speedy enough for high-volume production, according to the automaker. 

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