Independent, Expert EV Reviews & Advice Since 2006

Volkswagen is first car maker to produce vehicles which are 85% recyclable and 95% reusable

The Volkswagen Group has become the first car maker worldwide to produce series vehicles which are recyclable to a minimum of 85 percent and reusable to a minimum of 95 percent by mass.

The “Reusability, Recoverability and Recyclability” certificate issued by the Federal Motor Transport Authority on behalf of the EU confirms that Volkswagen already complies with the administrative and technical requirements of the new EU Directive 2005/64/EC before it comes into effect. From December 2008, when the new Directive is enforced, all vehicle manufacturers will be obliged to provide evidence of recyclability when applying for type-approval of new vehicles. The Directive specifies that new vehicles must be reusable and/or recyclable to a minimum of 85 percent and reusable and/or recoverable to a minimum of 95 percent by mass.

The new recycling requirements will become part of the type-approval procedure and oblige all vehicle manufacturers to submit a satisfactory strategy for ensuring the reusability of components and for the recyclability and recoverability of materials. The arrangements and procedures put in place by the vehicle manufacturer to manage all information received from suppliers will also be assessed.

The Volkswagen-SiCon process recovers materials from end-of-life vehicles for use as a valuable source of raw materials. Following treatment, hard plastics, rubber, textiles, glass and metal residues replace primary raw materials and thus contribute to protecting natural resources. Apart from the ecological aspect, this process presents an economically attractive alternative for secondary raw material users as raw material prices continue to rise.

”The certificates again confirm the pioneering role of Volkswagen in the environmentally compatible recycling of vehicles,” Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, Member of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Brand with responsibility for Development, commented. According to Hackenberg, innovative recycling has a long tradition at Volkswagen: “Last year, Volkswagen won the “European Business Award for the Environment” and the environmental award presented by the Federation of German Industries for its pioneering end-of-life recycling technology.” Volkswagen joined up with SiCon GmbH back in 1999 to develop a recycling process for end-of-life vehicles which is particularly effective in protecting the environment and preserving resources.

“We can confirm that Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft integrates all the required methods, systems and processes as early as the vehicle development stage and complies with all the administrative and technical requirements set out in EU Directive 2005/64/EC concerning recycling-compatible design, production and end-of-life disposal,” KBA President Ekhard Zinke said as he presented the certificates.