It turns out that a clever and economical way to save weight in a Ford could involve adding tequila.
Not the stuff you shoot while on spring break in Cabo, you joker. I’m talking about a byproduct of the agave plant that is used in tequila. Discarded fibers from the agave plant can be turned into a tough and durable bioplastic material that can be then used as a cheaper and lighter alternative to conventional plastics, reports The Detroit News.
Ford is looking into agave fibers and how they can be used for storage bins in cars, wiring harnesses and other parts after Jose Cuervo shipped boxes of the stuff to Dearborn for testing earlier this year. From the story:
“It’s as versatile as some of the other components we’ve used,” said Debbie Mielewski, Ford’s senior technical leader for sustainability research. “It really does contribute to less greenhouse gases.”
She went on to say that the bioplastics made from agave fibers are about 15 percent lighter than the talc or glass fibers it could replace.
After juices in the agave have been ground out for distillation for tequila, the fibers are usually thrown away or burned. But if Ford decides that using agave fibers is indeed beneficial, it will be able to buy the materials off farmers, thus creating a new revenue stream.
That means that maybe possibly the new Ford GT could eventually have tequila in it? Everybody wins!