Volkswagen is also still evaluating how to strike the best balance between incorporating new materials without sacrificing component quality. While the OEM aims to use the highest possible percentage of recyclable materials possible, each material switch comes at a cost.
“We have to think about the real customer requirements and needs in balance with where we can put in reduced material or materials,” Achtelik says.

Megan Headley is a freelance writer in Fredericksburg, Va. She can be reached at