Over the past few years, we’ve started hearing seeing companies go green by replacing leather car interiors with cruelty-free, vegan-friendly materials. At the LA Auto show we saw another car roll out with a cruelty-free interior, the Audi eTron GT concept is all electric with a design that says anything but tree hugger.
The average car interior uses around 15 animal hides and materials have evolved that luxury doesn’t require leather anymore.
In July 2017, it was reported that Tesla was eliminating leather from some of its designs, and in January, Tesla’s rival, Fisker Inc, announced it was launching a new electric car with a vegan leather interior. Then in March, Range Rover’s Range Rover Velar, which features a leather-free interior, was declared the World Car Design of The Year for 2018.
Bentley’s design director Stefan Sielaff, has also gone on record saying that the future of car interiors is vegan. Apparently, the uber rich want a car that better aligns with their belief system.
The BMW i3, has the self-proclaimed title of ‘greenest car in the world’. It is fully electric, the standard model doesn’t have leather seats, and the car itself is 95% recyclable.
Alcantara has been used in car interiors for years, it’s a faux suede material that has also been heavily featured by Microsoft in their Surface line of personal computers. Animal rights organization PETA also considers Alcantara a cruelty-free.
I didn’t realize that it is possible to have vegan tires for your car. Tires are created using stearic acid, which can be derived from animal grade products. If you want to go vegan with your tires, Michelin only uses vegetable/plant-based products. You can also go with Kenda tires whose stearic acid is derived from refined tree oil.
It’s not just about interiors. In January, Volkswagen committed to the elimination of animal testing, after a New York Times exposé revealed that the company, along with BMW and Mercedes- Benz, had forced monkeys to inhale exhaust fumes.
Whatever the nefarious reason behind many car companies going green we’re happy for an option that has a reduced environmental impact.
All thought the idea of vegan car interior isn’t new, the aggressive design and all sporty stance of the Audi eTron GT concept made us realize that the trend of vegan car interiors are here to stay.