Honda bets on sustainability at Milan Design Week

Honda shows its evolutionary approach towards customer-oriented product design sustainability. To this end, it has presented in one of its latest electrified urban concepts, the Pocket Concept and the car prototype SUSTAIN-Call during the Milan Design Weekfrom April 16 to 21.

Both prototypes will be in charge, together with the newly released SH125i Vetro scooter, of exhibiting the combination of innovative materials and careful aesthetics, while reducing CO₂ emissions derived from the manufacturing process at the Honda Italia Industriale factory in Atessa , Italy.

In this way, Honda pursues its goal of achieving carbon neutrality in all its products and corporate activities by 2050. It does so with the development of the Vetro version of its SH125i scooter.

Vetro (Italian for glass) is a special edition model featuring unpainted and semi-transparent green fairing panels, the production of which reduces CO₂ emissions by 9.5% compared to traditional painted fairings. Developed in collaboration with Honda Motor in Japan, this new material replaces the ABS plastic traditionally used for non-structural parts and components.

Honda bets on sustainability at Milan Design Week

The sophisticated appearance of the SH125i Vetro model is combined with its efficiency and functionality, making it the first Honda model manufactured in Atessa to meet the new emissions targets of the EURO5+ regulations. Marcello Vinciguerra, Managing Director of Honda Italia Industriale comments:

“The SH125i Vetro scooter demonstrates how small changes in the use of materials can have a notable environmental benefit. At the Atessa factory, we work hard to improve the efficiency of our production methods, and this also applies to how we reduce the emissions we generate.”

Honda bets on sustainability at Milan Design Week

Concludes: “As such, we are excited to contribute to Honda's global carbon neutrality goals through product development and continued innovation.”

Honda has launched the Triple Action to Zero initiative, which covers carbon neutrality, clean energy and resource circulation. Regarding the latter, Honda aims to establish the circulation of resources from vehicle to vehicle and the application of up to 100% sustainable materials.

Honda bets on sustainability at Milan Design Week

Pocket Concept and the SUSTAINA-C prototype as sustainability tools

Both the prototype SUSTAIN-C As the Pocket Concept They are the first examples of what the outlook could be in the future. Presented at Milan Design Week, they advocate for neutrality in carbon emissions. Victoria Friend, Head of Product Compliance & Sustainability at Honda Motor Europe puts it this way:

“The prototype SUSTAIN-Cthe Pocket Concept prototype and the SH125i Vetro scooter exemplify the change we want to implement as we accelerate our transition from a mass consumption business model to one of circularity.”


Concludes: “This cannot happen overnight, but if we identify the small steps we can take now – like those being taken at our Atessa factory – we can implement increasingly effective measures that will help us achieve neutrality in carbon emissions in our products and our corporate activities by 2050.”

First presented at the Japan Mobility Show 2024, the prototype SUSTAIN-C explores how society could free itself from the limitations of finite resources. Furthermore, he is accompanied by Pocket Concepta compact motorcycle that can be stored in the trunk and provide last mile mobility.

Honda bets on sustainability at Milan Design Week

The exterior body panels of the SUSTAIN-C They are made from recycled acrylic resin from second-hand taillight windows, so they do not require painting, allowing Honda to create a unique unpainted finish that would not be possible with traditional materials.

Additionally, the panels of the SUSTAIN-C Not only are they resistant to cracks and capable of recovering their original shape after slight collisions, but they also offer a high level of resistance to atmospheric agents with minimal degradation due to the effect of solar radiation. Its tailgate stands out, which acts as the screen of a smartphone.

Honda bets on sustainability at Milan Design Week

The mini LED display has been designed to communicate with other road users using simple messages or images, thus offering a potential new dimension for the exterior design of future vehicles.

In the words of Kento Ishiispokesperson for the SUSTAINA-C prototype: “The SUSTAINA-C prototype is proof of the possibilities that are within our reach when we commit to greater sustainability. This is not only the case for the panels themselves, but also for elements that cannot be seen from the outside.”

Honda bets on sustainability at Milan Design Week

Concludes: “Whether it's using more environmentally friendly steel for the chassis or recycled materials for the interior, there are many ways we can start to change the way vehicles are made. Furthermore, none of this has to detract from the appearance of our products; “New materials can be used to create a unique aesthetic and provide our customers with added value.”

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