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Porsche Partners with Hydro to Lower the Carbon Footprint of Its Luxury Sports Cars

© by Marcus Valeur, Porsche

Porsche AG signed an agreement with Norsk Hydro ASA to further reduce the carbon footprint of its luxury sports car models by using low-carbon aluminum and extrusions. In addition, the two companies will collaborate on an innovative value chain concept for battery materials and their recycling.

Partnering for Sustainability (L-R): Hilde Merete Aasheim, president and CEO of Hydro, and Barbara Frenkel, executive board member for procurement at Porsche AG. (Photo: Marcus Valeur, Porsche.)
Partnering for Sustainability (L-R): Hilde Merete Aasheim, president and CEO of Hydro, and Barbara Frenkel, executive board member for procurement at Porsche AG. (Photo: Marcus Valeur, Porsche.)

“Porsche is working towards a net carbon-neutral value chain of our vehicles in 2030,” said Barbara Frenkel, executive board member for Procurement at Porsche AG. “Aluminum and materials for battery production play a key role in our sustainability strategy. With Hydro’s aluminum we aim to substantially reduce CO2 emissions deriving from this important material.”

Due to its superior properties in pliability, light weight, and strength, the ratio of aluminum in Porsche cars has been increasing steadily. Aluminum is one of the key elements in the transformation of an electrical vehicle (EV) into a sports car. Already today, aluminum constitutes around 30% of the total weight of the Porsche Taycan, the brand’s first fully electric sports car.

As part of the ambitious decarbonization plans of both companies, Hydro aims to supply Porsche and several of the automaker’s component suppliers with low-carbon aluminum, which is said to have one of the lowest CO2 footprints on the market, covering emissions from the mine to the metal. By 2025, Hydro will enable Porsche to reduce the footprint of the aluminum in future vehicle projects to around 3.5 kg of CO2 per kg aluminum used. This is approximately 60% lower than the average primary aluminum consumed in Europe currently.

In addition, Hydro is aiming to achieve zero carbon aluminum production by 2030. The aluminum producer aims to do this by increasing the use of renewable energy in aluminum production and recycling post-consumer scrap to increase circularity and reduce the footprint of the aluminum produced.

“To reduce global warming, we need to decarbonize energy systems, produce for circularity and recycle resources already in use,” noted Hilde Merete Aasheim, president and CEO of Hydro. “Aluminum is a key enabler in the green transition, but supply chains must become emission free. The industry needs to partner up to make this happen and we are pleased to be able to work with a pioneer like Porsche in our common task to create a nearly carbon-free car.”

Another important part of the agreement between the two companies will be the proof of concept for building a sustainable battery value chain in Europe. Porsche and Hydro will cooperate in the development of a roadmap to recycle battery materials in Europe. One of the key elements of this project will be to investigate how to build efficient closed loop solutions for Porsche’s EV batteries.

“Access to sustainably sourced raw materials is a key challenge for the automotive industry,” said Frenkel. “Hydro has extensive experience in the recycling of battery raw materials. At Porsche, we have a clear commitment to increase the usage of recycled materials in our vehicles. The principle of a circular economy is something we share with Hydro. We aim to secure our supply chain in the long run and therefore expect valuable input from our recycling project with Hydro.”

The European supply chain for materials, vital for battery production, is still in its early stage. Recycling is expected to play a crucial part in meeting the rising demand for automotive batteries in the future. Collaborations across traditional industries will be required to succeed. Porsche and Hydro are committed to exploring opportunities for joint contributions in this field. Both companies expect the first feasibility results of joint battery recycling in 2025.

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