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Added leather to my Prius - much better

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Accessories and Modifications' started by rondocap, Dec 23, 2012.

  1. torr310

    torr310 Junior Member

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    Either make it as the stock seat or as the seat cover.
    I think I had seen some car manufacturers having this kind of seat material in their racing cars or concept cars.

    Not talking about the synthetic leather (or leatherette) because it is similar cold/hot as the real leather.
     
  2. WD0AFQ

    WD0AFQ Active Member

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    I just do not like cloth. I don't require leather either but this time, we paid to get the real thing, with heat. We are glad we had them installed. We get lots of comments about the leather seats in the C, when showing the car off.
    Some folks would rather have the cloth but the cloth that was in our model 2 looked cheap and the seats did not sit to suit us. The extra padding under the leather made a big difference for us.
    Dan
     
  3. JMT

    JMT Junior Member

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    What brand kit did you get? Also, do you have any pictures? Thanks.
     
  4. teamsc10190

    teamsc10190 Stereo Prii (2011 and 2006)

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    I specifically bought a 2011 Prius Four to be able to get real leather seats. I considered the aftermarket leather kit route for a new car as dealers offered but ultimately rejected it for air bag safety concerns.

    The seat airbags are designed to deploy through the forward side seam of the upright backrest cover. An aftermarket supplier has absolutely no insight into Toyota's design considerations for the manner in which the OE seat covers are designed to yield for airbag deployment. None. If they assure they do; they're lying. If they assure they've extensively tested their seat covers to perform just like Toyota's for an airbag deployment, they're lying. Toyota design engineering standards aren't an open book that can be referenced by aftermarket suppliers. A seat airbag that doesn't deploy, or deploys too early, or too late, or in the wrong orientation can have disastrous consequences for seat occupants.

    I've had lots of experience with unintended consequences for things I've modified, that have yielded fuel economy penalties, or had tire wear implications or the like, but I draw an unyielding line as it relates to safety systems. Properly functioning safety systems are never an accident. What I don't know could hurt me or someone dear to me and if I had a seat airbag malfunction due to an aftermarket seat cover I'd installed, I could never be at peace with it.






     
  5. Miata Racer

    Miata Racer Junior Member

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    Fair enough, but if the add-on leather that EVERY dealer offers is that dangerous, why aren't the horror stories in the news...warnings by the NHTSA not to do it...lawsuits against the leather suppliers and installers, etc.?

     
  6. WD0AFQ

    WD0AFQ Active Member

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    I bought my leather through the dealer.
    dan
     
  7. teamsc10190

    teamsc10190 Stereo Prii (2011 and 2006)

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    My point isn't that installing an aftermarket leather kit will cause the seat airbag to malfunction, but that aftermarket seat cover suppliers have no means to design and validate that the seat airbag will function properly per Toyota's design considerations. You need the misfortune to have a side-impact accident to find out and that's a little late for discovery.

    Folks need to understand the risks and ask themselves if they're willing to roll the dice with safety systems hoping that aftermarket upholstery suppliers may have chanced upon a solution that will function properly per Toyota's design. Understanding that the core competence of companies making leather seat covers is for cut and sew goods: they don't design, manufacture or validate automotive seats or airbag systems.

    Airbag inflators are essential solid rocket motors so when the bag pops it's an explosive event. The seat cover's role is to yield (split open) in the right place to not interfere with or deflect the direction or timing of deployment. If your assessment is that the cut and sew shop has a handle on this then you could feel comfortable to go with the aftermarket leather.

    I personally didn't feel comfortable with this scenario which is why I bought a car with factory leather. If my wife or children suffered injuries as consequence of aftermarket modifications I'd made to the car, I could never live with that. This is what worked for me but clearly you need to make your own decision.

    At least 60% of the owner's manual is liability avoidance cautions and warnings. Few people read the cautions or pay attention until something happens and then they're scrambling to find a lawyer to assign the blame. (With apologies for the editorial).
     
  8. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    Clazzio Leather Seat Covers - FAQ Page

    http://11i-usa.com/engine/swf/player.swf?url=../../data/video/airbag_test_1.flv
     
    Merkey likes this.
  9. teamsc10190

    teamsc10190 Stereo Prii (2011 and 2006)

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  10. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    Understood. I just wanted to post the link because I forgot to do so earlier. :)

    FWIW, I kinda like the Clazzio covers better than the SofTex I have now. :)
     
  11. The Dude

    The Dude Member

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    Wait a min, the plug-in costs how much? and no leather?
     
  12. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    Approx. $28k after incentives or less if you are in NY.