From the October 2022 situation of Car and Driver.

To cut back its carbon footprint, BMW is attempting one thing modern if a bit icky: matte-finish paint made out of poop. Don’t panic. As in different recycling, there are a number of steps between sewage and the special-order end in your M440i.

Biological waste is a supply of natural and renewable variations of naphtha and methane, compounds sometimes concerned in paint manufacturing. When separated from their gross environment, they’re nearly similar to the naphtha and methane sourced from petroleum. Starting with waste merchandise means utilizing much less fossil gasoline, and BMW paint provider BASF says CO2emissions on this manufacturing course of are 40 % decrease.

Developing paint from different natural supplies is not as plug-and-play and requires extra time. But for the reason that waste-sourced coating is almost similar to the oil-derived model, it may be produced on brief discover.

BMW’s vegetation in Germany and South Africa have switched to color made this fashion, which implies matte-coated Bimmers from Ms to X3s may have the sustainably sourced end. So if a hater says your new matte-finish BMW “has a crappy paint job,” you possibly can proudly reply, “Yes, it does.”

Your Car Is Garbage

BMW just isn’t the one firm waste to make elements. Here are a number of different examples of automakers digging within the recycling bin:


Abandoned fishing nets and different trash are remodeled into Econyl regenerated nylon, utilized in flooring mats for autos, together with the Mercedes-Benz S-class and the BMW iX.


Illustration by Typfy|Car and Driver

Hold Tight

Ocean garbage can also be become much less seen items, such because the Ford Bronco Sport’s wiring-harness clips, which use plastics created from nylon fishing nets recovered from the Indian Ocean.

cow free

Illustration by Typfy|Car and Driver


Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is a polymer in single-use objects comparable to plastic bottles, purchasing baggage, and straws. Volvo derives its leather-based various, Nordico, from supplies together with recycled PET bottles and wine corks.

lit up

Illustration by Typfy|Car and Driver

Lit Up

Hooked on McDonald’s espresso? You’re serving to Ford make elements. Coffee chaff, the dried pores and skin of the beans that comes off after they’re roasted, might be blended with plastic and different components to create a sturdy reinforcing materials, so the Blue Oval has partnered with McD’s to utilize its java suppliers’ discards. Ford offers the chaff new life in headlight housings and different elements it says are about 20 % lighter and require as much as 25 % much less power to supply.

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