Not just nicer, but greener too.
Volvo interiors are already some of the nicest in the luxury segment, especially the "Vinyl City Weave" plaid seat option found on the V60 wagon. We find it difficult to see how the Swedish automaker could further improve its already stellar interior quality but around a year ago the company said it wanted to use more recycled materials inside its cars. Volvo interiors currently consist of around 5% recycled plastics but the company has pledged this number will reach 25% by 2025. In order to reach this goal, Volvo is currently searching for suppliers to provide more recycled materials for its interiors.
Speaking to Automotive News, Volvo Board Member for Procurement, Martina Buchhause said, "We are having a lot of discussions with our Tier 1 suppliers. To speed up this process, we are also talking to the chemicals and raw materials suppliers. And, to be even faster, so that we can begin testing even earlier, we are inviting new partners to help us innovate together on recycled materials or materials from renewable resources."
Volvo recently hosted a Sustainability Day where suppliers and non-government organizations could pitch new ideas for car interior materials. Some of the materials for dashboards and carpets can be made from recycled plastics found in fishing nets, bottles, and even straws. "We at Volvo believe that collaborators win," Buchhauser said. "Therefore we need people around us who can help us and co-create with us on this plastics ambition. That is why it is important to address this to a broader audience."
We will start to see the efforts of Volvo's sustainability goals when it launches its new SPA2 architecture, starting with the third-generation XC90 in 2021. Volvo has already asked for pricing quotes on recycled plastic interior parts for its next-generation interiors. "We have translated the ideas into our specifications and into our sourcing process," Buchhauser explained. It will only be a few short years until we see how Volvo's recycled interiors feel on a production car and we're sure the environmentally friendly materials will appeal to eco-conscious buyers.