The Tesla Model 3 is now officially vegan.
Earlier this year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk told shareholders that the Model 3 and the Model Y would be fully vegan by 2020. Now, he has officially fulfilled his promise on the former.
The car company eliminated leather seating in 2016, opting for a vegan alternative. The steering wheel, however, was not so easy to alter.
“I believe we were close to having a non-heated steering wheel, that’s not leather,” Musk explained back in June at Tesla’s annual shareholder meeting. “There are some challenges when heating the non-leather material and also how well it wears over time.”
Now, the car company has reached its goal of offering a leather-free non-heated steering wheel. Together with a short video of the Model 3 with an onscreen image of a cow on the dashboard, Tesla Tweeted “Model 3 interior is now 100% leather-free.”
It’s not confirmed if the Tesla Model Y will be fully vegan. Musk has also expressed that he isn’t sure when the Model S and X will be completely leather-free.
Model 3 interior is now 100% leather-free 🐄 pic.twitter.com/2F47zp8A4T
— Tesla (@Tesla) August 31, 2019
Car Companies Go Leather-Free
More car companies are embracing leather-free options. Volvo’s Polestar 2 — set to be available from 2020 — features a completely vegan interior. And earlier this year, Nissan unveiled a prospective new design, which is kitted out in vegan leather.
“This is a progression,” said Giovanny Arroba — program design director at Nissan — at the time. “This is a step forward. We’re looking at this for 2022 and beyond.” He added, “we wanted to get a premium [feel], and that’s usually always leather. We captured that, I think with a synthetic version. We’re going into the realm of vegan leather and synthetics, but celebrating it and making it cool.”
Porsche has also joined the vegan leather club. In August, the German automobile manufacturer announced its upcoming Taycan model will be available in vegan leather and tanned Club Leather. The former generates 80 percent less carbon dioxide when produced than its animal-based counterpart, notes Porsche.
The flooring of Porsche’s new vehicle will also be eco-friendly. It will feature Econyl recycled fiber, which is made from recycled fishing nets.