17 March 2022
According to GQ Magazine, fashion legend Giorgio Armani helped design a very special Fiat 500 as part of a charity project. Alongside a grey-green, silk-effect metal body, alloy trims and a folding fabric roof, this sexy little number included an interior “as chic as it is sustainable” featuring natural controlled-origin leather, wool fabric and regenerated wood. Proceeds from the sale of the one-off car were earmarked for the Earth Alliance – Leonardo DiCaprio’s climate change-fighting non-profit organisation.
Leather remains the go-to material not only for style, comfort and practicality but for sustainability too. It offers whole lifetime performance for car seats thanks to its functional properties and durability. Historically, it has always been a preferred material for many reasons including its longevity and endurance: if treated well, genuine leather will remain in pristine condition.
As a natural material, leather is also both strong and flexible – ideal properties for a car seat. In addition, it is resistant to soiling, staining, scuffing and scratching. Due to its lightfastness, leather will keep its colour and appearance, while its natural ability to resist heat makes the material flame retardant. Day-in, day-out, leather maintains its properties in any car interior.
Interestingly, Armani and his design partners also equipped the fashionable Fiat with anti-pollution and anti-bacterial technology. Leather’s structure and the way it is processed provides natural resistance to bacteria and car buyers are increasingly requesting it as an option for this reason.
It’s also nice to see that an eco-friendly, electric car like the Armani Fiat 500 chooses natural leather to fit in with the sustainability narrative of the design in contrast to faux leather (vinyl) which is made from petroleum-based plastics and less sustainable. As a fully bio-degradable material with a very long useful life expectancy which is derived as a by-product of the food industry, leather is the perfect green complement to this design tour de force.