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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

Auto leather isn't all it's cracked up to be

When you're the car guy, you are often relied upon to counsel other folks on the subject of buying or fixing cars. And you should give your knowledge freely, because the rules of the advice bartering system mean that someday, when you need an asparagus steamer or an automatic tennis-ball launcher, you will have questions.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/opinion/auto-leather-isnt-all-its-cracked-up-to-be/
211 REPLIES 211
jawinks6500
New Driver

This is the kind of vapid article that I would expect on Jalopnik, not here.



audiobycarmine
Instructor

Yeah... the guy must be one of those leftist radicals, who care only about economics, health, the environment and animals.
JimDino619
Intermediate Driver

Sorry Pal, radical name calling says more about you than the writer of the article, and it was a sorry article. You know nothing of left or right, just name calling.

Why not hang out on some political bulletin board.

I'm about as far left as they get and I won't have anything but leather interiors, so where does that leave you?
SLAVENDER
Intermediate Driver

You forgot to say nee-ner, nee-ner.
DeanH
Intermediate Driver

I would not admit nor would I be proud to be a democrat in this current environment...regardless of what upholstery fabrics I support.
erne75
Intermediate Driver

"I'm about as far left as they get"
Hmmm...Fully vaxxed, vegan and "excited" about fully electric government transportation, I suspect?
audiobycarmine
Instructor

ADDENDUM — To Whomever I incensed by mentioning “radicals”, I apologize... I wrote the posting in a satiric spirit.
No matter HOW anyone feels about leather/animals/meat, this article informed me of things I’d not known before.
Any new learning is priceless — I need some every day.
JimDino619
Intermediate Driver

Fair enough. I apologize for jumping the wording. It gets touchy these days.

audiobycarmine
Instructor

Thanks, Jim — this was most generous of you.

Believe it or not, I too am a card-carrying Liberal; from the mid-60’s.

Since the early 1990’s, I decided that any creature who could “love me in return”, deserved — nay, required; better treatment.

While Hagerty’s pages may not be an actual social-media site; the exchange of information, and even some personal ideas, is surely welcome in these times... we truly ARE a Community.

TG
Instructor

I'm trying to figure out how leather got us to draft cards and political parties... my ADHD prevents me from reading all of that, so it will remain a mystery
erne75
Intermediate Driver

"Since the early 1990’s, I decided that any creature who could “love me in return”, deserved — nay, required; better treatment."
Ha, me too! Thats why I got me a wife!
cobrafia
Pit Crew

"I'm not a member of any organized political party; I'm a Democrat."

Will Rogers
Dakar09
New Driver

Agreed. This guys "opinion" is idiotic and agenda-driven. Don't like leather? Don't get it.Caring for it part of the auto enthusiast repetoire. Dude should get over himself. And eat a hamburger.
Trojan75
Pit Crew

I think you meant he should eat a vegi-burger.
Gary_Bechtold
Technician

Double cheeseburger with bacon and grilled onions. Excuse me while I go get one now.
audiobycarmine
Instructor

"LIVING skin off a bovine" ?? I truly hope not.
I'm with you on consuming less (or in my case, no) meat. Earth AND you will be far healthier.
Tim
Instructor

I think he meant "once living." The bovine is euthanized before the hide is removed during the same activity that processes the meat and the rest of the carcass.
oldcardoc
Pit Crew

The animals are raised for food not indiscriminately killed for the hide . Get a life eat more beef let the chicken live a little longer and what about plants they have feelings too LOL .
CJinSD
Instructor

Besides, predators are always smarter and stronger than their prey. We have canines for a reason. The effort to get us off of red meat is all about increasing our compliance.
Paint-mixer
New Driver

So what you’re saying is that we did the Earth a favor by slaughtering the MILLIONS of Bison that once roamed the plains? I think not!!
hyperv6
Engineer

Leather seats are great. They look and feel good and provide steaks for grilling.

Never let a vegan or PETA member do a story on leather seats and how to age beef. It is never a positive story.

My seats are fine and even cooled.

Lots wears, hard to clean, can age with styling badly and look like grandmas couch.

Treat the leather and enjoy.
tigercat
Intermediate Driver

Funny you bring up PETA. My brother is married to one of them and he tells her it stands for, " People Eat Tasty Animals ".
Real_Life
Intermediate Driver

This marriage *may* not be long.
compaqdeskpro
Intermediate Driver

I don't disagree with most of what you said here, but Taco Tuesday jokes belong at Jalopnik. Besides, has anyone ever had diarrhea directly resulting from Mexican food who hasn't eaten too much of it?
hyperv6
Engineer

Depends where you eat it. 

Tsaxman
Detailer

"Depends." I see what you did, there.

Trite and inane article, though. I think Haggerty can do better, and typically does.
SilentBoy741
Advanced Driver

And which which you rather have to clean after that, a leather seat or cloth?
dickscream62
New Driver

No
XJ6
Intermediate Driver

My mother always said "If you can not say anything nice don't say anything at all." Here is my comment:
warrene
Intermediate Driver


Depends on the leather .... Seats in our '02 Lincoln Town Car are as perfect as it gets, look great and nice to slide in on, comfort at it's peak, Lincoln quality of the day. Car has 200K on it.
warrene
topside
Detailer

I'm pretty sure the author's point is that leather isn't the optimum seat covering.
And I agree; I prefer cloth over leather, vinyl, or any of the marketing names thereof.
I'd gladly trade the mint leather seats in the only car I own that has them for cloth, which I have in several other vehicles.
JGeske
Detailer

I am taking delivery of a new car at the end of next week, and the look on the salesman's face when I specifically said I do not want leather (necessitating the ordering of the vehicle as everything on the lot had it) was comical. He tried everything to get me to buy one with leather, and I had to shoot him down. I pointed out it was hot/cool, he said you can get the seats heated/cooled, I said "so I should pay more for the leather, then pay even more for the heating and cooling that I wouldn't need without it?" I said that I would take the leather if they charged me $0 for the heated/cooled seats, and he laughed at the thought. The arguments went on about the caring for, degradation in time, cost to repair (I have ripped more than one seat in the past), etc, that are mentioned here. He finally relented when the GM came out of the office to greet me, the poor salesman had no idea that I am their dealership rep for one of their finance companies. The GM took care of getting it ordered and gave me a discount for the troubles.
RJ
Intermediate Driver

Were I shopping a new car and the salesman wanted to argue about my choices, I'd be shopping elsewhere. Old but true: Rule #1 The customer is always right. Rule #2 If the customer is wrong, see rule #1
tigercat
Intermediate Driver

RJ, like that reminds me of the 70's-80's Raiders. In their locker room they used to have a sign as told by Matt Millen. Rule 1. cheat if you have to, to win.
Rule 2. Refer to rule 1.
JGeske
Detailer

After all was settled, I explained to said salesman that, unless they start making heating and cooled rear seats the standard, parents like myself will continue to avoid leather. Sure you cool my butt up front when the seat is hot, but my 3 and 5 year old kids, well when the backs of their legs hit that hot rear leather when dangling down from their child seats, they are not so happy. I know someone (their kid goes to daycare with my youngest) whose kid actually burned themselves bad enough on a hot leather seat that they had blisters. What are we supposed to do, not let kids wear shorts in the summer so that daddy and mommy can have so-called "luxurious" seats. Screw that I say. Give me the cloth all day long, with ScotchGuard because of the kiddos.

daffodildeb
Pit Crew

Unless you drive the car until it drops, you'll probably lose money when you sell. Most people like leather.
JimDino619
Intermediate Driver

In the cars I had in my younger days, the non-leather seats were trash. They ripped and wore out much faster than any of the leather interiors that I have had over the past 25 years. I see no pluses to any other covering.

 

As far a heated seats goes, they are great. In the vehicles I have owned, if they were supplied without heated seats, it was only the controls that were missing. It was easier and less expensive for all of the seats to have the heater net in place whether or not it was used. I can't speak to cooled seats as I have never seen a need. Plus, the heated seats usually some with a package that gets a front windscreen and outside mirror heating system. If you don't live where there is ice, I guess it doesn't have much value.

grayanderson5
New Driver

The issue is that the author came off as high-handed. Different coverings have pros and cons, but when he started complaining about eating meat he went off the rails from my POV.
Berto
Pit Crew

This was an absolutely total waste of time to read! I expect much more from Hagerty!
SilentBoy741
Advanced Driver

Could be worse, we could've gotten another Chip Foose Draws a Car.
tigercat
Intermediate Driver

Agree. If Chip had to survive on my purchases of his designs he would be working the drive through at the local fast food restaurant.
SilentBoy741
Advanced Driver

I actually refer to a garish, poorly customized car as "Foosing".

JimDino619
Intermediate Driver

The comments to this article have some value.

carnusse
New Driver

Aaron Robinson just lost all his cred with me. He sounds like a tree hugging progressive vegetarian.
I have leather in my 17 year old Tahoe and 35 years in my 64 E-Type Roadster without any of his aforementioned detriments. I think he let his emotions get way ahead of any logical thinking he may have had. Better luck next time.
OHCOddball
Detailer

I assume the article is meant to be tongue in cheek. Anyway, I agree that leather is over rated. I grew up with vinyl seats and burned my a** on it for enough years. Had leather trimmed cloth seats that were equally as bad if you happened to slide over the leather edge while wearing shorts. Much rather have GOOD cloth seats--not the ones that look like grandma's drapes or sofa. Plus in sports cars, you would slide around much more with leather. In older cars with mohair, they wore like iron (as long as the mice stayed out). Leather is just a way for manufacturers to pad the price way up---sell expensive leather and then heated/air conditioned seats to go with it.
JGeske
Detailer

Exactly, you pay more for leather, then pay more for the heat/cool option that you wouldn't have needed without the leather. Heated cloth seats (I live in Northern WI and enjoy a warm seat) are the way to go.
JimDino619
Intermediate Driver

I guess it is an issue of what car you are buying. Most of what I have purchased for the past 30 years would be impossible to order with anything other than leather. You would have to go after market and the seat covers replaced. Now who is paying more?

JimDino619
Intermediate Driver

I'm sorry, but well made leather seat covers give you all of the comfort and are not slick. You really need to try a well made modern leather seat. They have none of the issues you described. You don't slide on them and they don't burn after the vehicle has been sitting in the sun. I think you have just been exposed to junk leather seats covers.

dooscoop32
Detailer

I am one who has owned a lot of cars which had leather. Unfortunately, I had no choice in the matter because they already had it when I bought them. But I don't care for it and never have. It requires tremendous amounts of maintenance and still may not look good later on.

I highly prefer vinyl or cloth.