From trash to treasure

From trash to treasure

Landfills aren’t a pleasant place to be in, but you’ll probably think twice in a new Jaguar or Land Rover …

Next-generation Jaguar and Land Rover models will feature floor mats and trims made with Econyl fibre from recycled industrial plastic, fabric offcuts from clothing manufacturers, fishing nets from the farming industry, and nets abandoned in the ocean – known as “ghost nets” (which are nearly invisible in dim light). 

This commitment to designing sustainable luxury interiors, using responsibly sourced and recycled materials, is part of Jaguar Land Rover’s Destination Zero mission.

“Our designers and engineers are committed to developing the next generation of sustainable materials that will feature on future Jaguar and Land Rover models,” says Adrian Iles, senior engineer of interior systems at Jaguar Land Rover.

“We place a great deal of focus on the creation of new sustainable materials, using the latest, most innovative techniques and textiles. Minimising waste, reusing materials and reducing carbon emissions sits at the heart of our Destination Zero mission. This pioneering materials research is one of the key ways we’ll achieve this and is an integral part of our design offering to our customers.”

The Econyl regenerated nylon, created by Aquafil – a global specialist in the synthetic fibres industry – has already been used by high-end fashion, sportswear and luxury watch brands to create handbags, backpacks, swimwear and watch straps. 

The nylon waste is reclaimed by Aquafil from all over the world. In a single year, the company recycles as much as 40 000 t of waste. The recycling process reportedly reduces the global warming impact of nylon by 90% compared with the material produced from oil.

For every 10 000 t of Econyl raw material produced, 70 000 barrels of crude oil are saved and 65 100 t of carbon emissions equivalent are avoided.

Inside the treatment centres the waste is analysed, treated and prepared to feed into a chemical plant, where the nylon waste is broken to its original raw material using a chemical treatment process, known as depolymerisation. The raw nylon material is then turned into the yarn, known as Econyl. 

Throughout the process, other by-products such as non-nylon, metallic materials or copper sulphate (used to prevent seagrass from growing on fishing nets) are removed and sent to alternative industries for recycling.

This yarn will be used to manufacture floor mats for future Jaguar and Land Rover models with the goal of using more environmentally conscious and sustainable materials while still providing customers with a premium, hardwearing product.

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