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Transportation

Indonesia's humble rattan moves on from furniture to electric cars

German company devises way to use tropical climbing plant in vehicle interiors

Rattan is an abundant natural forest resource in Indonesia that Nio is using to replace interior plastics on its newest electric vehicle. (Source photos courtesy of Out for Space)

BALI, Indonesia -- Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer Nio has begun deliveries in China of its new ET7 sedan -- boasting autonomous driving features and a maximum range of 1000 km -- setting up a head-to-head competition with Tesla and its Model S.

But it is the car's use of a tropical climbing plant found deep in the jungles of Indonesia that may lay claim to being its most unique feature.

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