In a bid to resurrect wooden cars, Finnish papermaker UPM-Kymmene Oyj will show a street-legal prototype at the Geneva motor show in March, Bloomberg reported.
The eco-friendly car is built on a frame that uses tree pulp and plywood and even runs on fuel made from bark, stumps and branches.
It's more than just a marketing stunt. The Helsinki-based company has developed technology that makes lumber a potential option for the auto industry.
UPM's Biofore concept, which uses off-the-shelf products, is designed to meet European standards for crash and fire safety and offer all the comforts of a conventional car.
"The world of sustainable development isn't something that's chosen; it'll come," Juuso Konttinen, UPM's vice president for new business, said in an interview in a Helsinki warehouse where the car is being kept under wraps for now.
Every major auto show features super-cool concept cars that are never actually produced. This vehicle, however, is symbolic of a large-scale, global effort to replace heavy steel components and make automobiles less of a burden on the environment. Regulators are demanding more efficient vehicles, and that makes reducing weight a priority for automakers.