Tesla Model 3 and Model Y Will Go Fully Vegan by Next Year

Musk says they are working on eliminating the use of animal leather in the cars.
Jessica Miley

The Tesla Model 3 and Model Y are getting an upgrade. They will go fully vegan next year.

Last year, the electric car maker switched from leather seats to “Tesla Synthetic Material” but the standard steering wheel in the car remained animal sourced.

A vegan steering has always been available as a custom option for Tesla drivers but now the ‘cruelty-free’ option will become the mainstay.

Tesla was asked by a representative from ‘People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals’, better known as PETA to eliminate leather from all Tesla cars during yesterday's annual shareholder meeting. 


Musk indicated that he was fairly confident that Tesla would be totally plant-based by the next annual meeting. He went into some details about why it hasn’t happened sooner. 

According to Musk, the company does have a design ready for a non-heated synthetic leather steering wheel, but are still working on how to make a vegan heated steering wheel.

The difference is that a heated wheel causes your hands to excrete more oils which can affect the synthetic material; an issue that doesn’t normally happen with leather.

The exchange went down like this:

PETA: “Can you confirm the Model Y will be vegan as promised?”

Musk: “Yes it will.”

PETA: “…and that all of Tesla’s products will be free of animal products by next year's shareholder meeting?”

Musk: “Uh I’m not, there might be the tiniest bit left, I’m not sure, but Model Y, Model 3, I think I’m confident about that. We have a lot of things to solve but I think for sure the Model Y and the Model 3 soon and you can also special order for the S and X.”

Animal agriculture big emissions culprit

This is great news for those that prefer not to engage with animals products and good news for animals, generally.

While we don’t have carbon footprint data for the production of, either the leather steering wheel or the new plant based design, eliminating animals from the cycle is a sure way to reduce carbon emissions.

According to PETA, animal agriculture is the largest source of CO2 emissions globally. The call for people to switch to plant-based diets is getting stronger.

There is clear evidence that a drastic reduction in meat-eating across the globe would have a positive impact on the carbon emissions. 

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