Skoda to use sustainable materials for interiors of its future models
Skoda's technical development department has teamed up with the Technical University of Liberec to create a sustainable and ecological material that the automaker intends to use in the interior of the new Skoda models. The material will be used at places such as the door trim and decorative inlays in the dashboard. The company has also applied for a patent for the same.
The material will be made from sugar beet pulp. Skoda Auto board member for technical development, Johannes Neft said that the brand wants to take up the role of a leader in the area of sustainability. “We are taking a holistic approach to this issue, and we are addressing much more than just the CO2 emissions of our vehicle fleet; we are also focusing on researching and using ecologically sourced materials and investigating, for example, how materials such as coconut fibres or rice husks can be used in the future," he added.
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The company will apply a special process to dye the sugar beet pulp to develop the design accents for the interiors. In order to avoid a long supply chain and reduce carbon footprints, Skoda will obtain the materials directly from the town of Dobrovice, not far from its headquarters in Mladá Boleslav. The automaker has obtained another sustainable material from the reed miscanthus, the fibres of which will be processed and used for door trim. Skoda believes that these organic residues obtained from production will make excellent ecological raw materials as they can be processed without the need for additional resources. This will reduce the dependency for industrially produced raw materials, informed the brand.
The team is experimenting with the usage of these materials on an Octavia model specially prepared for this. The floor and right-side panels of the demonstrating model have been removed for an unobstructed view of the interior. The new materials will be processed and tested to give them an accurate picture of which eco-materials are suitable for use in series production models. Door panels and vehicle pillars have been finished using miscanthus-based fabric while shavings of sugar beet have been used in the door panels and on the dashboard.