Jaguar XE's recycled aluminium body saves 500,000 tons of pollution

by Sam Sheehan, Autocar UK 28 Apr 2016


The Tata Motors-owned Jaguar has saved 500,000 tons of greenhouse gas pollution through the use of recycled aluminium in its XE.

The Coventry-based car maker has been using a closed-loop aluminium recycling process to construct the XE’s bodyshell, and says that after 12 months of production it has reclaimed more than 50,000 tons of the metal – about the same weight as 200,000 XE bodyshells or six Eiffel Towers.

The figures are a result of project ‘REALCAR’ which involves 11 UK press shops implementing a closed-loop, segregating waste aluminium scrap so that it can be sent back into production to be re-melted into recycled aluminium sheet for use in Jaguar Land Rover vehicles.  This is said to be 95% more efficient than the sourcing of primary aluminium.

The Jaguar Land Rover-led research project, part funded by Innovate UK, also saw the development of a recycled aluminium-based alloy which can accept a higher percentage of the recovered scrap. In 2014, the Jaguar XE became the first car in the world to use this innovative high-strength aluminium alloy, developed by project partner Novelis.

These figures illustrate how beneficial using reclaimed materials can be in car production, and come after the car maker has invested a total of £7 million (Rs 69 crore) into the process, with help from the UK’s Innovate fund.

JLR’s engineering director Nick Rogers said of the announcement: “Innovation is at the heart of everything we do at Jaguar Land Rover. We are driven by the desire to produce increasingly world-class, lightweight, vehicles, but we also want to be world leading in how we build them.

“The success so far marks a significant step towards our goal of having up to 75% recycled aluminium content in our vehicle body structures by 2020.”

As well as the XE, Jaguar also uses recycled aluminium in the bodyshells of its new F-Pace and latest XF.

Yesterday it was revealed that the car maker is closing in on a deal to absorb a 60-acre site located close to its Coventry base. The new site would allow JLR to expand its research and development facilities.