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May 19, 2021

BMW to use sustainable tyres on PHEV SUV

The BMW Group said it would be the first automotive manufacturer to equip its cars with tyres using certified sustainable natural rubber and rayon, a wood-based material used to strengthen the tyres.

The automaker will source 22-inch tyres from Pirelli and, from August 2021, will use them on the X5 xDrive45e Plug-in-Hybrid.

Certification of the rubber plantations and the complex supply chain for natural rubber and rayon takes place in accordance with the strict standards of the independent Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), BMW said.

Andreas Wendt, BMW purchasing and supplier network chief, said: “We have been committed to improving cultivation of natural rubber and increasing transparency in the supplier network since 2015. The use of tyres made of certified natural rubber is a pioneering achievement for our industry.”

By far the largest share of natural rubber grown worldwide goes into tyre production. Natural rubber’s high elasticity and sturdiness currently make it irreplaceable.

To earn certification, Pirelli adapted its US plant in Rome, Georgia, to produce tyres using FSC-certified natural rubber and rayon.

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