September 4, 2019 / 3:27 PM / 17 days ago

Porsche goes green with leather-free electric sports car

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Porsche is making a leather-free version of its new Taycan electric sports car in the latest attempt by a German automaker to play up green credentials as environmental activists lobby for a boycott of the industry.

Last month, a climate activist group smashed up 40 luxury vehicles and called for a boycott of this month’s Frankfurt Auto Show because it celebrates an “outmoded climate and environment destroying transportation system.”

Porsche, part of Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE), said on Wednesday it would invest 6 billion euros (£5.4 billion) through 2022 to develop electric vehicles, as it presented its first zero-emissions sports car.

“With the Taycan, Porsche offers an entirely leather-free interior for the first time. Interiors made from innovative recycled materials underscore the sustainable concept of the electric sports car,” Porsche said.

The Taycan has a range of 450 kilometres, making it the first electric vehicle from a German carmaker capable of rivalling Tesla in terms of operating range.

Thanks to an 800 volt system, the car is also capable of adding 100 kilometres to its range from a five minute recharging of its battery, Porsche said.

The Porsche Taycan Turbo S is priced at 185,456 euros, or 138,826 pounds. First customer deliveries are anticipated from January 2020, the carmaker said.

Other sports car makers are also rushing to develop electric models. Ferrari said last month it hoped to introduce a fully-electric model some time after 2022.

Reporting by Edward Taylor; Editing by Mark Potter

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