Coca-Cola’s PlantBottle technology has been applied for the first time beyond PET packaging as part of the interior fabric of a Ford Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid research vehicle.
The vehicle uses PlantBottle technology for seat cushions, seat backs, head restraints, door panel inserts and headliners all of which contain up to 30% plant-based materials.
The idea behind the vehicle was launched last year when Ford and Coca-Cola research teams came together to explore innovation opportunities in more sustainable products. Both companies use PET, in a variety of products including plastic bottles, fabrics, nonwovens and carpets. This provided a natural opportunity to bring together both recyclable and renewable technologies.
Since The Coca-Cola Company introduced PlantBottle Technology to the market in 2009 as the first-ever recyclable PET plastic bottle made partially from plants, more than 18 billion PlantBottle packages have been distributed in 28 countries, resulting in more than 400,000 barrels of oil saved. If PlantBottle interior fabrics were migrated across the majority of US Ford models, it would displace nearly 4 million pounds of petroleum-derived materials, as well as save the equivalent of 295,000 gallons of petrol and 6,000 barrels of oil.
“By using PlantBottle Technology in a plug-in hybrid, Ford and Coca-Cola are showing the broad potential to leverage renewable materials that help replace petroleum and other fossil fuels, reducing the overall environmental impact of future vehicles,” said John Viera, global director of sustainability and vehicle environmental matters at Ford.
The collaboration also demonstrates the influence that comes from combining two of the most recognisable brands in the world – Cola-Cola and Ford together reach billions of consumers in more than 200 countries on six continents.
The Ford Fusion Energi research vehicle will be on display later this month at the Los Angeles Auto Show.