updated 11/30/2010 9:59:12 AM ET 2010-11-30T14:59:12

If you buy a new Ford Focus next year, chances are it will have a couple of shredded pairs of old blue jeans under the floor.

That's because the Dearborn, Mich., automaker is using recycled cotton clothing such as denim in the sound-deadening material and carpet backing in the Focus, a compact car that goes on sale early next year in the U.S. and Europe.

The company said in a statement Tuesday that it's looking for other discarded materials that it can use in cars as part of its strategy to recycle things to divert waste from landfills and reduce the use of virgin material.

"One of our key goals is to use more recycled or renewable materials without compromising performance or durability," Carrie Majeske, the company's product sustainability manager, said in the statement.

In the past Ford has used recycled resins for underbody parts, soy-based foam for seat cushions and recycled yarn for seat covers.

Ford said the amount of recycled cotton in each Focus is equivalent to two pairs of blue jeans.

Ford won't reveal the Focus price, but said it will be competitive with the Honda Civic, which starts around $16,000 in the U.S. The Focus will be made at factories in Asia, Europe and the United States.

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