EXCLUSIVE: Next Ford Escape to Use Recycled Plastic Bottles for Carpeting
American automakers are quickly becoming world leaders in sustainable technologies, from fuel-efficient cars to alternative fuels and recycled materials. Ford especially has been rolling out one recycled material after another, and I even got a chance to check out some of their upcoming recycled products earlier this year at the Forward with Ford event.
Among the many innovations are soy-based foam seats, recycled cotton fibers and blue jeans used as sound deadening and carpet backing, and even coconut-based plastics. It’s all very green…and the numbers will really start to add up. Ford has also started employing electric yard tractors, and their U.K. diesel engine plant is now 100% wind powered.
The recycled bottle carpeting had to stand up to Ford’s rigorous durability tests, where engineers can simulate up to five years of wear and tear in just 15-minutes. The solution to preventing premature wear and discoloration is adding more plastic, 25 bottles in all, to carpeting throughout the as-yet-unrevealed next-gen Escape.
This is just another piece of what is shaping up to be a very sustainable vehicle Ford plans to unveil next month. The next-gen Escape will also be dropping its hybrid model in favor of more-fuel efficient EcoBoost engines that should get even better MPG than the hybrid predecessor. And if it looks anything like the Vertrek concept Ford unveiled at the North American International Auto Show last winter, or the EVOs concept unveiled last month, I think the Blue Oval will have a definite winner on their hands.