Date posted: 07-12-2007
DEARBORN, Mich. — Ford has announced that it will use soybean-based foam cushions, co-developed with Lear Corp., in the 2008 Mustang. The automaker says the move will "eventually" save "thousands of barrels of oil" that are traditionally used to make petroleum-based foam for vehicle seats.
The soy-containing seatbacks and cushions will be installed in the Mustang at the Flat Rock (Michigan) Mazda-Ford Auto Alliance International assembly plant. Ford says this is the industry's first use of the soy-based flexible foam. However, the automaker also notes that it has a history of using soy in vehicles that goes back to the Model T — which had 60 pounds' worth of soy in its paint and molded plastic parts.
Ford and Lear began the partnership to explore the commercial use of soy in vehicles in 2004. They say the reduced need for petroleum-based products is one advantage; others are reduced CO2 emissions, up to 24 percent renewable content and lower energy needed to produce the material.
What this means to you: A far, far better use for soy than tofu.