Why This Major Car Brand Wants To Eliminate The New Car Smell

Tue 20th Nov 2018

One of the world’s biggest car manufacturers is working on a solution rid their cars of the famous ‘new car’ aroma, but do we want to lose it?

Whilst many of us in the Western world actually cherish that clean, newly upholstered car smell, there are other cultures which don’t actually appreciate it as it offends their noses.

According to a survey conducted in China by J.D. Power, the smell of a new car is the most complained about element of buying a new car, with more than 10 per cent of drivers making it their No.1 issue.

So while in the UK we actively look for air-fresheners which replicate the smell of a new car, Ford Motor Company are working on a technology which aims to eliminate the problem.

Ford have created a team of ‘Golden Noses’, 18 members of staff with particularly sensitive noses, whose job will be to sniff every element of a car’s new interior, and if any are considered offensive to the Chinese nose they will be rejected. Ford has also applied for a patent on which a new technology will bake off and air out the most offending aromas in a car. This ‘bake off’ is thought to be as simple as parking the car in sunlight, opening the windows, running the heater fan and starting the engine.

“While ‘new car smell’ is ingrained in American culture, we know Chinese customers dislike that scent. This patent is the result of years of research and is just one idea we are considering for future use,” Ford’s Debbie Mielewski, senior technical leader in materials sustainability told the Detroit Free Press.