Volvo Cars says it is taking ‘an ethical stand for animal welfare’ by committing to not using leather in any of its fully electric vehicles. The Swedish firm is launching a completely new family of pure electric vehicles and aims to only offer EVs by 2030, all of which will be leather-free.

By 2025, Volvo wants 25 per cent of the material in its cars to come from recycled and bio-based content, and wants its immediate suppliers to use 100 per cent renewable energy by the same date.  As part of this, the firm is working to find high-quality, sustainable sources for many of the materials used in the car industry.

Volvo says the move is in part down to concerns about the negative environmental impacts of cattle farming, including deforestation.

Stuart Templar, director of global sustainability at Volvo, said: “Being a progressive car maker means we need to address all areas of sustainability, not just CO2 emissions. Responsible sourcing is an important part of that work, including respect for animal welfare. Going leather-free inside our pure electric cars is a good next step towards addressing this issue.”

Instead of leather, Volvo will offer alternatives such as Nordico. Developed by the firm, it is made from recycled material such as PET bottles, bio-attributed material from sustainable forests in Sweden and Finland, and corks recycled from the wine industry.

It is also looking to reduce the use of residual products from livestock production in plastics, rubber, lubricants and adhesives. In its statement, Volvo said: “By aiming to actively replace these materials as much as possible, Volvo Cars takes a strong and ethical position to do what it can to help stop animal harm, by contributing to a reduced demand for these materials containing animal products.”