BMW and Mini will offer vegan interiors from 2023

From 2023, BMW and Mini will offer vegan interiors in their vehicles. Raw materials of animal origin will thus be replaced by innovative biosourced materials.

The BMW Group, which includes the BMW and Mini brands in particular, plans to launch its first vehicles withfully vegan interiors (vegans) from 2023, removing animal-derived materials and leather, and by replacing them with innovative materialswith properties similar to leather.

These materials can also be used on many surfaces, such as the steering wheel, which must meet demanding criteria in terms of touch, appearance and wear resistance. By studying some interiors free from materials of animal originthe BMW group is riding the wave of veganism, and responding to a growing demand for leather-free interiors, which can be found in particular in the United States, China and Europe.

BMW and Mini: the reduction of emissions in the line of sight

Beyond the fashion effect, this new offer will above all allow the German group to reduce CO emissions2 over the entire life cycle of a vehicle, with the aim of achieving climate neutrality by 2050. By replacing raw materials of animal origin, BMW and Mini will increase sustainability in the production of their vehicles .

Thus, with the addition of these new materials to the group’s vegan cabins, the share of raw materials of animal origin should fall to less than 1% in BMW and Mini vehicles. This small part will always be found in certain areas not visible to users, such as gelatin used in protective coatings, or even lanolin in paints.

BMW and Mini: alternatives to leather

Of course, the BMW Group had already offered textile interiors as an alternative to leather for a long time. From now on, the offer will be enriched by a substitute for leatherwhich can be found on the seats and upholstery, but also on the steering wheel:

“With a steering wheel made from a high-quality vegan surface material, we are responding to the wishes of our customers who do not want to compromise on look, feel and functionality. The innovative material resists wear and tear caused by abrasion, perspiration and moisture, and has all the desirable properties of leather”said Uwe Köhler, Head of Body, Exterior Trim and Interior Development at the BMW Group.

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BMW and Mini: 85% reduction in CO emissions2

This alternative to genuine leather allows you to reduce CO emissions by up to 85%2 : this share includes approximately 80% of emissions in the form of methane from cattle breeding, and 20% from the transformation of cowhide into leather, which consumes a great deal of energy and water.

Future generations of BMW and Mini models will featureother alternatives to leatherwith innovative bio-based materials that result in an approximately 45% reduction in CO emissions2. The Strange is a 100% bio-based and petroleum-free material, which can mimic all the properties of leather, while the Deserttex is a material made from cactus fibers combined with biobased polyurethane.