Get the leather look: The simple truth about cleaning luxury car interiors

If there’s a car owner out there who doesn’t love leather interiors, we have yet to meet them. Some of the most luxurious cars on the market make use of this impressive feature, including recent releases like the BMW 8-Series, Lincoln Navigator, and even the Bugatti Chiron. There’s something sexy and almost Bond-esque about it and, let’s face it; we all want to live it up like 007 now again.

The trouble is that, while fabric seat covers are fairly basic to care for, the same rules don’t always apply to leather. Many a leather interior has gone from stylish to shabby as its owner has struggled to grasp proper cleaning. To make sure you don’t join them, keep reading to find out the surprisingly simple steps to help you keep your leather in luxury condition for many years to come.


Misunderstanding types of leather and their needs is the most fundamental cleaning mistake any vehicle owner could make. Keeping on top here is all about knowing precisely what kind of leather you’re dealing with, and thus how best to clean it.

The good news is that most leather interiors are now coated before release, making cleaning as simple here as with any other interior. Still, older models don’t enjoy this benefit, and perforated seats may also need a little extra attention. Your first step towards cleaning here should, therefore, always be to refer to your manufacturer’s manual for those all-important details.


You may assume that heavy chemical cleaners are the best way to remove grime, and it is true that they shouldn’t do any harm to coated options. Still, using heavy chemicals on untreated leather is going to end in absolute disaster. As such, it generally pays to avoid chemical cleaners and instead turn to water-based options using steam mobile car detailing equipment or similar. As well as cleaning grime, options like these can rehydrate and restore the appearance of your leather. That’s always got to be better than stripping things down with a toxic option. 


General guidelines state you should leave leather interiors to dry for around twelve hours after cleaning. Yet, many owners make the mistake of thinking that sun-led drying sessions are best. Newsflash; they aren’t. In reality, UV rays can do real damage to leather, especially where drying is concerned. Instead, then, finishing this job off right is all about seeking a shaded spot where your seats can dry without worry. This is the case no matter whether your leather is treated or not, and guarantees that your efforts here always lead to sparkling results. 

Sexy as they are, many vehicle owners find leather seats daunting, but there’s no need. As you can see here, successful cleaning actually tends to be about simplifying a process that we too-often complicate. Then, you’ll be able to get your shades on and start driving around town like the boss you are at last!

Photo Credit: Copyright 2020 Angel Mosqueda / Car Fanatics Blog

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