When the 2013 Ford Fusion arrives this fall, it will carry some unexpected materials beneath its aerodynamic and fuel-efficient body. Integrated into the vehicle will be denim material equivalent to slightly more than two average-sized pairs of blue jeans, 38.9 clear plastic 16-ounce recycled bottles, and about 31,250 soybeans.
“Building vehicles with great fuel economy is our highest priority in reducing impact on the environment,” says Carrie Majeske, Ford product sustainability manager. “With every new product design, we also are charged with increasing the use of renewable and recyclable materials in our cars, utilities and trucks to reduce impact on the environment.”
Noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) control is held to world-class standards in the new 2013 Ford Fusion with post-industrial, recycled cotton used as sound-absorbing material. In every Fusion, denim helps to nullify unwanted road, wind and powertrain noise. Paired with other noise-reducing practices and techniques Ford engineers have implemented for years, the 2013 Fusion will provide customers with a quiet, relaxing driving environment.
A more easily visible sustainability move will be the 2013 Fusion’s cloth seat surfaces, which are made with 100 percent REPREVE yarn, a hybrid of post-industrial and post-consumer waste (or materials once utilized for industry purposes; and materials used by everyday consumers respectively).
Post-consumer plastic water and soda bottles are collected, chopped, ground, melted and reformulated into chips. These chips are then extruded and textured into fiber. The fibers are then used in the creation of fabric, then dyed, finished and rolled for shipment. Underneath the seat upholstery is the foam for seat cushions, seat backs and head restraints. In the 2013 Ford Fusion they're all made of a soy-based sustainable material, with the equivalent of approximately 31,250 soybeans.
Ford uses soy foam on every vehicle built in North America, which has reduced petroleum production by more than 5 million pounds and carbon dioxide emissions by more than 20 million pounds annually.
theCD's take: The 2013 Fusion takes recycled car battery casings, about 2 millions pounds per year, and utilizes them for fender splash guards and underbody components.