The fabric of dreams: Alcantara at Autostyle 2021

Beautiful, lightweight and often found in fast cars: that's Alcantara. You could also say: The somewhat different fabric. The microfiber multi-talent is not only suitable for motorsports, but also has fashion and astronomical potential - as Filippo Taiani shows us at Autostyle 2021.
Text Marko Knab
Photo Alcantara

Autostyle 2021 with Alcantara, Ford, Ferrari, Volvo, Toyota and Bulgari.

Register now and watch live!

The automotive interior dream par excellence: for most it is leather that comes to mind. But in fact, there is a fabric that offers a sustainable and even racing-inspired alternative, as can be seen in the new Maserati MC20. The name: Alcantara. A fabric with an Italian history and Japanese roots. It all began in Japan in the 1970s, when Miyoshi Okamoto developed the fine thread while working for his company "Toray Industries" - more or less as an accessory to another fabric. However, the significance of the artificial leather made of 68 percent polyester and 32 percent polyurethane soon became clear - and in 1972 Toray founded "Alcantara SpA" together with the Italian chemical giant ENI. Still in existence today and to this day also the only manufacturer of the exclusive fabric, based - of course - in the fashion city of Milan.

Five decades after its development, Alcantara's triumphant success continues, whether as a cover in the cockpit or directly on the steering wheel of sports cars. Even luxury brands like Louis Vuitton use Alcantara as a material for their bags, as well as for entire garments that can be made from it. And although it is made of plastic, Alcantara is considered quite sustainable: easy to care for, it lasts a long time, and its production has been CO2-neutral since 2009. Animals are naturally also saved by the leather substitute. And then there was the latest mission of the fine thread: Alcantara has even made it into Earth orbit on board Space-X capsules.

Like last year, the 18th, ramp-supported, edition of Autostyle, will be held digitally - enabling interested visitors from all over the world to attend by registering. The series of lectures kicked off on the October 7 - with the introduction of the key speakers of the lecture series. Tomorrow, Alcantara Design Manager Filippo Taiani will take the stage. The rest of the event schedule is as follows:

  • October 7, 2021: Kick-off event
  • October 14, 2021: Fabrizio Buonamassa for Bulgari
  • October 21, 2021: Robin Page for Volvo
  • October 28, 2021: Paul Wraith for Ford
  • November 4, 2021: Matteo Battiston for Luxottica
  • November 10, 2021: Lance Scott for Toyota
  • November 17, 2021: Flavio Manzoni for Ferrari
  • November 24, 2021: Mitja Borkert for Lamborghini
  • December 2, 2021: Filippo Taiani for Alcantara
  • December 9, 2021: Klaus Busse for Maserati

Autostyle 2021 with Alcantara, Ford, Ferrari, Volvo, Toyota and Bulgari.

Register now and watch live!

ramp shop

Latest articles

Frankfurt Fashion Week: Fashion meets automotive and sustainability

Five days, fashion & Frankfurt: This year's »Frankfurt Fashion Week« will focus on sustainability. At various hotspots in the Main metropolis, you can experience the latest fashion between vehicles, photographs, exhibitions and at webinars.

The Greatest - Muhammad Ali

There was a time when people would set their alarm clocks to watch a live Muhammad Ali fight. And today? The legend would have turned eighty years old. We look back on the extraordinary man and sportsman - also with two extraordinary illustrated books.

ramp #56 – All in Good Time

Control-freak decision-makers are going to need nerves of steel. Because the culture of senseless activism is here to stay. “Change” is the mantra of constant transformation, “innovation” the refrain that defines the prevailing imperative.

The coolness tool

Whether in the Bible, in Newton's garden, or in your pocket: Few things have shaped and changed us as much as the apple. A brief case study - including the fall of man, the discovery of gravity, Apple's new iPhone14 - and something with Tom Cruise and Michael Fassbender.