German OEM BMW has announced that its Neue Klasse of vehicles launched from 2025 onward will benefit from plastic trim pieces produced using a raw material made from 30% recycled fishing nets and ropes.
The waste materials – which are sourced from international ports – go through a separation stage ahead of the fishing nets and ropes being turned into plastic granules using a process developed with Danish company Plastix.
Unlike similar plastics used within the automotive industry, the new type of recycled material is suitable for injection molding and can be used to produce interior and exterior trim parts for future BMW vehicles. The sustainably created components are said to benefit from a carbon footprint that is 25% lower than pieces made using traditional plastics.
The BMW Group has set company targets to increase the proportion of secondary materials in the thermoplastics used in new vehicles from an estimated 20% at present to an average of 40% by 2030.
The BMW Group also utilizes recycled nylon waste as the basis for a synthetic yarn called Econyl. The material – produced by using discarded fishing nets, old floor coverings and waste from plastics production – is used to manufacture the floor mats for the BMW iX and the new BMW X1.