5 December 2023

Mobile computers with plastic seating?

Automakers’ GREENWASHING EXPOSED: Real Leather Wins Over Plastic Profits

Report by Is it leather?

Who here enjoys going to a car dealership? Maybe those who revel in the art of negotiation, but for the majority of us, we do our research to avoid getting swindled or “over-sold”, take a deep breath, and prepare for the “pitch”. Automakers aren’t known for sharing with us the facts about their latest and greatest models – commonly covering up the removal of certain features in exchange for others. Slowly, but surely, we’ve been sold large computers on wheels, that now instead of real leather interiors, have plastic, sold to us as “environmentally friendly”, or what Car and Driver claims as “Green Cred”. Why the sly marketing pitch? Because automakers only have so much money to build a car, and when you’re adding in technology, you must cut somewhere – and what is the first to go? You guessed it: leather.

We’re told at the dealership that we are saving carbon emissions by going with their new pleather alternative. But they would never call it pleather – it usually has a fancy name intended to pull the wool over our eyes, like our good old’ friend “Naugahyde”, the pioneer in fake leather. Or worst case, the salesman might just sell you a lie and tell you that it’s real leather.

In the last decade, those who purchased leather in their new cars increased by 9% and a recent poll stated that 52% of consumers want real leather. Yet, automakers only offer leather in 15% of their vehicles. People want leather more than ever before but are consistently being sold “Green Cred” in exchange for cheaper materials covering an expensive mobile computer. Claims of lower carbon emissions are produced by automotive manufacturers’ OWN calculations, not an industry-independent study across materials. So what do you believe? The automaker’s Green Claims that pleather is better (saving them money at your expense). Or the authentic bio-based product, that has endured thousands of years of development and will be an investment throughout the life of the vehicle? Research before you go in: don’t get swindled.

Ask for Real Leather.

About APLF

We bring leather, material and fashion businesses together: an opportunity to meet and greet face to face. We bring them from all parts of the world so that they can find fresh partners, discover new customers or suppliers and keep ahead of industry developments.


We organise a number of trade exhibitions which focus on fashion and lifestyle: sectors that are constantly in flux, so visitors and exhibitors alike need to be constantly aware both of the changes around them and those forecast for coming seasons.


Follow Us On:

Contact us