Jaguar and Land Rover to use waste plastic for future interiors

British premium car brands Jaguar and Land Rover will use recycled plastic from landfill and ocean waste to trim their future cars.

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has announced a new partnership with synthetic fibre company Aquafil to use its Econyl fabric - made from repurposed plastic waste - to create trim and floor mats for upcoming models.

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Econyl is made from a combination of recycled industrial plastic, fabric offcuts from clothing manufacturers, fishing nets from the farming industry, and those abandoned in the ocean– known as “ghost nets”.

Using chemical treatments, the different materials are broken down into the raw nylon material which is then turned into Econyl yarn. This has the same properties as regular nylon and can then be used to create carpets and other trim materials. It has previously been used to make clothing and watch straps.

JLR is adopting the yarn in its production as part of its Destination Zero policy to reduce the environmental impact its vehicle manufacturing has.

Aquafil says that producing Econyl has just 10 per cent of the global warming impact of creating new nylon thanks to lower CO2 emissions and savings in crude oil.

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Adrian Iles, senior engineer of interior systems at JLR, said: “Minimising waste, re-using materials and reducing carbon emissions sits at the heart of our Destination Zero mission. This pioneering materials research is one of the key ways we’ll achieve this and is an integral part of our design offering to our customers.”

The Econyl fabric is the latest alternative fabric to feature in JLR cars, after a eucalyptus textile interior on Range Rover Evoque and the optional Kvadrat used in Evoque, I-Pace and Range Rover, which uses a wool/suede cloth made from recycling plastic bottles.

Other brands are also using recycled plastic in their cars, with Fiat’s 500 and Panda hybrids offered with a Seaqaul yarn upholstery made from recycled marine waste.