The wine industry isn’t the only one we cover that looks to sustainability to ensure longevity and profitability, so does the car industry.
With its 2013 Fusion, Ford is leading the way into using renewable, sustainable materials that come from food-products which are not only more “environmentally friendly” but also help lower its use on petroleum-based products.
One of the criteria in choosing these new materials is that they did not want to compete with usable food products which is why the items mentioned in these slides all come from food by-products. Currently, Ford’s sources for these items are scattered across the globe – for example, the dandelion is from Russia and Canada produces the wheat for use in the Flex and coincidentally, it’s in Canada where the Flex is built. Why source from various parts of the globe you may ask? Well, in part, it has to do with the ability for each region which relies on these textiles to have an open-trade-line in the quantities needed for each project.
Carrie Majeske, Ford’s Manager for Product Sustainability told us:
“Future endeavors are generally to get more and more recycled and renewable material into our vehicles. This generally applies to plastics, rubber and foam and we have some application in all of our cars and trucks, interior, exterior and under the hood. I’d estimate we’ll introduce new bio-based or natural fiber materials at the rate of about one per year but it depends on “readiness”; we have no firm target for this. How fast the material would be migrated across all carlines depends on the business case (primarily cost and weight savings). “
So there we have it, what we’re seeing now, in many ways, is simply the tip of the iceberg as it pertains to Ford’s continuing efforts to provide cars that look great, perform great and are made from as many feasibly sustainable products as make sense.
With its new Fusion Hybrid, Ford has finally produced a car for the masses that looks stellar, drives well and is priced very competitively – you should setup a test-drive at your local dealer if you’re at all probing the hybrid market.