Toyota City, Japan – Toyota will use a new, improved version of its “Ecological Plastic” that features the world’s first use of bio-PET, made from plant-derived material, for liners and other interior surfaces. The company has been used bio-based Ecological Plastic in its vehicles since 2000.

The new plastic will first be used for the luggage compartment liner in the Lexus CT200h, due at the beginning of 2011. The company will then increase both the number of vehicle series using the material, as well as the amount used in each vehicle, leading up to a model in 2011 in which 80 per cent of the vehicle’s interior will be covered with Ecological Plastic.

The new plastic is more durable and has better heat and shrink resistance than conventional bio-plastics, and its performance is on par with petroleum-based plastics. The company said that with volume production, the new Ecological Plastic has the potential to approach the cost-per-part of petroleum-based plastics, and can be used in seats, carpeting and other components that require a high level of performance previously unattainable by the previous Ecological Plastic.

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