Nissan: Standards in sustainability and material efficiency

Mark Ellis, Materials Design and Testing Manager Europe, explains the role of standards in ensuring optimal sustainability and materials efficiency.

At Nissan, we use a raft of standards in our materials design and testing (1). They ensure we work in a consistent and compliant way, and we use them extensively when validating products for specific regional requirments.

At their core, standards inform an efficient use of available resources and promote a focus on the circular economy – meaning the sustainable application of materials, via recycling and reuse strategies across the supply chain. Working with recycling partners we can ensure that 20% of the plastic, up to 40% of the aluminum and half of the precious metals we use in our new cars come from recycled sources.

The End of Life Vehicles EU Directive also requires certain ISO standards to be applied to materials coding, as well as steering manufacturers towards designing for increased materials recycling. We do not begin production on any proposed new vehicle unless we can demonstrate that it’s 85% recyclable, and 95% recoverable.

With the drive for ever-greater weight reduction through material design, recycling also becomes increasingly challenging for new and complex lightweight materials, which in turn requires frequent attention to ensure standards are upheld.


1. Access to European Law. Directive 2000/53/Ec Of the European Parliament and of the Council. Available at: