BMW Plans on Producing Cars Made From Fully Recycled Materials

Across the automotive industry, many companies are creating cars that address the environmental concerns facing our planet, including BMW. The German automaker has big plans for its electrified model lineup. In addition to creating more electric cars, BMW plans to produce cars made from fully recycled materials.

Eco-friendly BMW i Vision Circular Concept has 100% recycled parts

Two people standing near a beige BMW i Vision Circular Concept
BMW i Vision Circular Concept | BMW

The shortage of materials and supplies is creating significant problems with slowing down the production of cars. This is especially exasperated by the Covid-19 pandemic wreaking havoc on supply lines. Also, the production of electric vehicles is increasing the demand for materials that are needed for batteries. This includes aluminum, nickel, and cobalt. 

The use of recycled materials in cars is one solution to address the increased demand. BMW cars, on average, currently consist of 30% reusable and recycled materials. However, for its “Secondary First” initiative, BMW plans on increasing this to 50%. For example, a new door trim in a BMW vehicle can be made for a recycled instrument panel. To demonstrate what’s possible for recycled materials and parts, BMW created the i Vision Circular concept car.

Is a production version of the BMW i Vision Circular coming soon?

The i Vision Circular, which debuts this month at the Munich Motor Show, is made from 100% recycled and reused parts. For now, BMW has no plans to make a production version of the i Vision Circle. It is a showcase of what a recycled BMW car could look like in 2040.

With the i Vision Circular, BMW is re-thinking the design and production cycle. Instead of focussing on car components in terms of only traditional things like performance, comfort, and aesthetics, BMW is addressing their ability to be reused and recycled. 

A man driving the BMW i Vision Circular Concept
BMW i Vision Circular Concept | BMW

An example of this is the solid-state battery in the BMW i Vision Circular. It consists almost entirely of materials that were sourced from the recycling loop. Also, the battery is 100% recyclable. In comparison, the battery in the BMW iX electric SUV has only 30% recycled aluminum and 50% recycled nickel. With the i Vision Circular concept, BMW is showing that this percentage can be greatly improved. 

In addition to addressing the material and supply shortage problem for vehicle productions, increased use of recycled materials in cars helps reduce carbon emissions. This is because less energy is needed for production and transport if recycled materials are used.

BMW Group aims to produce more all-electric vehicles


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BMW Group has very ambitious goals with regard to its electric vehicle lineup. In the next decade, BMW hopes to produce around 10 million electric vehicles. Half of its model lineup will consist of electric vehicles by 2030. Also, the Mini brand will only sell electric vehicles in 2030. Additionally, BMW is working to reduce cut its emissions by 50% for each mile driven. For the production of vehicles, the German automaker is targeting a 40% cut in emissions.