Mercedes Wants To Turn Cactuses Into Leather For Future Luxury Cars

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40% of all materials will be recycled within the next decade.

When it comes to sustainability, you'd be surprised to learn just how much a car manufacturer needs to do to ensure that every component of the final product does not have a negative impact on the environment. The Europeans seem to be at the forefront of showing off just how they can create an entirely clean car. BMW's i Vision Circular Concept was put together with the sole purpose of displaying how it can recycle materials without sacrificing luxury. The Mini Strip concept also gave us a hint as to how recycled materials can be used with a minimalist approach to create a quirky and basic hatchback and the stunning Polestar Concept 02 is a good example of how recycled polyester can still result in a clean and premium interior finish. Now, Mercedes wants in on the action and has committed to some impressive numbers over the next decade.

Mercedes-Benz
Mercedes-Benz
Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes-Benz aims to be a market-leader of sustainability with its young electrified EQ range. With the reveal of the EQXX, we got to see just how far it can push the concept of sustainability when it comes to interior design. The German company has now revealed that elements from this study will now be introduced into production cars.

By 2039, Mercedes-Benz wants all of its cars to be carbon neutral to pre-empt the European Union's 2050 legislation requirements, so consider this announcement a small step towards its tremendous final goal. Considering that the company will continue to invest in the research and development of recycled components, we can also expect to see more of these materials added to configurators in the coming years.

UBQ is an upcycled plastic-based material that will now be installed in all Mercedes EQS and EQE models. The material is put together via the collection of household waste and has been reformed into cable ducts. Eventually, the company hopes to extend its usage to the underbody panels, wheel arch linings, and engine compartment covers.

Driving Front Angle Mercedes-Benz
Central Console Mercedes-Benz
Driver Area Mercedes-Benz
Front Seats Mercedes-Benz

What about the surfaces that you interact with inside the car? Mercedes-Benz explains that its sustainability journey will not cramp its ability to create a luxurious interior. As of next year, it will engage with genuine leather suppliers who sustainably practice its cultivation. All future tanneries must also have official certification from the Leather Working Group if they are to be considered as a supplier.

If you're not too keen on having an animal give its life to cover your seats, Mercedes-Benz will introduce synthetic leather with a genuine feel using powdered cactus fibers and a fungal mycelia finish that is sourced via biotechnology. The brand says that these are still being researched with no indication of when they will become available.

Its current range of synthetic leather interiors, used to cover everything from the seats to the headlining, is mostly formed with recycled materials.

Taillight Mercedes-Benz
Dashboard Mercedes-Benz
Headlights Mercedes-Benz
Wheel Mercedes-Benz

As for other coverings, Mercedes-Benz says that this is already available in its production cars. The floor coverings on the EQS are made with nylon yarn sourced from recycled carpets and fishing nets. Some of its synthetic fabrics are formed with 100% recycled PET bottles.

Looking forward, Mercedes-Benz is leaving no stone unturned when it comes to sustainability. Through the power of chemically recycling used tires, it is set to introduce high-performance painted plastic door handles. A CO2-based foam is also set to be used for the rear seat cushioning. Finally, the brand details biotechnologically created silk fiber and bamboo fiber carpets for the use of interior upholstery.

As for the construction of a car, Mercedes-Benz says that its aluminum and steel production benefits from reduced CO2 emissions thanks to a revision of its supply chain. By 2025, all of its steel will be free of carbon emissions utilizing using hydrogen for the manufacturing process as opposed to the current coking coal. The Mercedes-AMG SL is set to introduce aluminum components that are completely recycled.

2023 Mercedes-Benz AMG EQE Central Console Mercedes-Benz
2023 Mercedes-Benz AMG EQE Back Seats Mercedes-Benz
2023 Mercedes-Benz AMG EQE Seat Details Mercedes-Benz
2023 Mercedes-Benz AMG EQE Driving Front Angle Mercedes-Benz

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