BMW Innovative Recycling: Turning Old Fishing Nets into New Car Materials

BMW is redefining sustainability in automotive manufacturing by introducing new materials made from recycled sources, such as old fishing nets and ropes, into its production line. This groundbreaking approach not only showcases BMW's commitment to reducing its environmental impact but also sets a new standard for the use of recycled materials in the automotive sector.

Image |
Published on
February 1, 2024

A Revolution in Material Sourcing

BMW has embarked on a mission to revolutionise its material sourcing by integrating 50 percent recycled materials into the production of new cars. This ambitious target aims to elevate the current use of secondary materials from around 30 percent in its new models. Through innovative process routes and material concepts, BMW is strengthening its sustainability efforts by collaborating with the recycling industry, commodity processors, and the scientific community.

The company’s focus is not only on enhancing the circular economy in automotive manufacturing but also on significantly reducing its carbon footprint through the sustainable use of resources.

The Path to Circularity

A key component of BMW’s strategy involves the use of thermoplastics made from 40 percent recycled material by 2030. By increasing the proportion of secondary materials in vehicle design, BMW aims to achieve a significant reduction in CO2 emissions. The company’s initiatives include the development of sustainable materials, such as Deserttex™, made from powdered cactus, in collaboration with innovative start-ups. These efforts align with BMW’s broader goal of embracing circularity and sustainability in its manufacturing processes.

Sourcing from the Seas

The innovative sourcing of old fishing nets and ropes from ports globally exemplifies BMW’s proactive approach to preventing ocean pollution. These materials undergo a specialized recycling method, resulting in plastic recyclate used in various vehicle components. This unique process, leading to the creation of plastic granules suitable for injection molding, highlights BMW’s pioneering role in sustainable automotive manufacturing.

Recycled Fishing Nets: A Milestone for the Neue Klasse

BMW’s press release unveils its collaboration with the Danish company PLASTIX, marking a significant advancement in recycling maritime plastic waste. The recycled marine plastic waste will be used in visible and invisible trim parts for the Neue Klasse models starting from 2025. This initiative not only increases the application possibilities for recycled plastics but also contributes to a 25 percent lower carbon footprint for these components compared to those made from conventional plastics.

Sustainable Design Philosophy

BMW’s use of recycled fishing nets extends beyond materials to include the fabrics for headliners and floor mats in models like the BMW i3 and BMW iX. This reflects a change in environmental awareness within BMW, emphasizing the importance of using recycled materials that do not compromise on quality or aesthetics. The recycled material, ECONYL® nylon, derived from fishing nets and other nylon waste, supports BMW’s vision of a fully circular product lifecycle.

Driving Toward a Sustainable Future

BMW’s commitment to integrating recycled materials into its production processes exemplifies the automotive industry’s potential to contribute to environmental sustainability. By setting ambitious targets for the use of secondary materials and pioneering innovative recycling methods, BMW is leading the way towards a more sustainable and circular automotive industry.

Stay up to date with the latest tyre industry news and updates.
Weekly Newsletter - No Spam Ever
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.