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Recycled TPE Grades Support EU End-of-Life Vehicles Directive

Avient’s extended portfolio targets auto interior applications such as mats, grips, and console trays.

Stephen Moore

June 21, 2024

2 Min Read
ca interior
algre/iStock via Getty Images

Avient has extended its reSound REC recycled content thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) portfolio with new AF 7210 grades specifically developed for automotive interior applications such as mats, grips, and console trays. This supports new targets proposed by the European Commission as part of the End-of-Life Vehicles (ELV) Directive.

More than 80% of automotive plastics end in landfills or incinerators.

Over 80% of the plastic parts used in automotive applications are estimated to end up in landfills or incinerators after reaching end of life, according to EuRIC, the leading voice of the European recycling industries. To address this issue, part of the ELV Directive stipulates that a minimum of 25% of the plastics used in vehicles sold starting in 2030 must be sourced from post-consumer recycled (PCR) materials. Of that, 25% must be from circular or closed-loop streams within the automotive industry.

TPE grades contain up to 59% recycled content.

Overall, the new reSound REC AF 7210 TPE grades from Avient contain 51 to 59% recycled content, with a minimum of 37% from PCR sources, including closed-loop feedstock. They provide comparable performance to 100% virgin equivalents and meet various OEM specifications. They offer an 8 to 18% reduction in the product carbon footprint (PCF) compared to virgin TPE grades, as calculated with Avient’s third-party certified PCF Calculator by TÜV Rheinland according to ISO 14067.

Directive puts pressure on OEMs, suppliers.

“Using recycled and more sustainable materials has long been a focus in the automotive industry. The introduction of new proposals such as the ELV Directive puts additional pressure on OEMs and automotive tier-one suppliers to deliver on incorporating more recycled content,” said Matt Mitchell, director of global marketing of Specialty Engineered Materials at Avient. “With a minimum of 37% post-consumer recycled content, the new reSound REC AF 7210 TPE grades offer over the minimum 25% recycled content required by the directive, helping customers toward compliance.”

The new reSound REC AF 7210 TPE grades are available in hardnesses ranging from 43 to 90 Shore A and can be overmolded onto polypropylene (PP) substrates. They have good UV stability and meet standards for volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and fogging, making them acceptable for use in interior automotive applications.

About the Author(s)

Stephen Moore

Stephen has been with PlasticsToday and its preceding publications Modern Plastics and Injection Molding since 1992, throughout this time based in the Asia Pacific region, including stints in Japan, Australia, and his current location Singapore. His current beat focuses on automotive. Stephen is an avid folding bicycle rider, often taking his bike on overseas business trips, and a proud dachshund owner.

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