Ford Motor Co. has signed a deal giving Praxair Surface Technologies Inc., a supplier of coatings application equipment, worldwide licensing rights to a partsmaking process the automaker says can cut tool and die development time in half and costs by more than 25%. A vehicle manufacturer the size of Ford typically spends $3 billion to $4 billion annually on production and prototype tooling, so the potential savings from implementing the new technique is huge — as much as $1 billion each ...

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