A Kia Sportage owner in the UK was in for a surprise after he found out that the “full leather” interior in his Kia Sportage was actually “…mainly plastic or vinyl.”
Dr Chris Castelli notified AutoExpress after a look at the car’s spec sheet revealed an added asterisk that wasn’t present at the time of Castelli’s purchase. The asterisk denotes “Some parts of the leather upholstery contain faux leather.”
AutoExpress contacted Kia regarding the matter, and a company rep said that the term “full leather” was intended to distinguish the interior from “partial leather”, which contains leather and cloth. Kia denied that there was any attempt to mislead customers and will discontinue use of the phrase, but did not offer compensation to owners.
Speaking to AutoExpress, Castelli remarked
“We all feel like we’ve been misled. The original brochure described ‘luxurious full leather’, but when you actually ask Kia about this, it turns out there’s actually very little leather used.
And now the million dollar question; is anything like this happening on our side of the pond? Everyone go to your cars, run your hand over the cowhide seat covers and see if it feels like an “ette” should be added to your “leather” upholstery.