Volvo goes Vegan
From 2025 onwards, our friends at Volvo (or Geely) have decided to leave cows alone and no longer use their hide for us to sit on. The idea is that by then 25% of each Volvo car is recyclable and even biologically degradable. That bar is set at 100% by 2040, which is in a mere 19 years from today! We can only wish them good luck!
Volvo will mainly use wool for their new seats and since no sheep are killed for their wool, this falls in the sustainable category. That will earn them good credits with the younger generation. Alternatively, Microtech, a suede-like textile made from recycled polyester, can be opted for. This is a sort of Alcantara style fabric that is already used in several sports cars and actually quite ok. Finally, Volvo will also use Nordico, another new, non-leather material that consists of textiles made from recycled material such as plastic (PET) bottles, wood remnants from sustainable forests in Sweden and Finland, and corks recycled from the wine industry.
Volvo is not the first car manufacturer to ditch leather. Tesla did so for their Model 3 and Porsche offers the Taycan without leather upholstery if you want. However, Volvo is the first of the more mass-market manufacturing companies some of us will actually see first hand in Malaysia. At first, we will be able to touch and feel the new Vegan upholstery in the XC-40 Recharge, and within a few years in all models.
So why is Volvo doing this? One could argue there’s plenty of leather available without animal suffering considering all the meat people are consuming. But it seems that is not an accurate assumption. Volvo has also noticed the market nowadays demands sustainability, not just of the end product, but also when it is being made. Less leather may mean fewer cattle which in turn means fewer greenhouse gasses. And we’ll get used to these new seats I’m sure as we did with all things that changed in the past.
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