Finding new ways to offset the carbon footprint of every vehicle made is very important to Ford, and finding new ways to do so has proven intriguing. For instance, Ford will introduce plastics made from tropical plant kenaf in the doors of its all-new 2013 Escape.
The plant, a cousin of okra and cotton, will offset 300,000 pounds of oil-resin plastics in North America every year, according to Ford Ford. Kenaf-resin plastics also reduce the weight of the door bolsters by 25 percent. The weight reduction should equal savings at the pump for consumers compared to if Ford would have gone with the traditional route.
Ford reports that the 2013 Escape meets the USCAR Vehicle Recycling Partnership goal that 85 percent of the vehicle is recyclable. This means less waste at the end of the vehicles’ life cycle.
The Motrolix Take
New technology that can make cars lighter, greener, and more efficient is always welcome. This new venture into kenaf fiber-based door bolsters is bringing jobs to American workers, as they are produced by International Automotive Components based in Greencastle, Indiana.