QOTD: Are You Using Protection?

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
qotd are you using protection

That headline takes the author back to his 1990s sex ed classes, but we’re not talking about that today. No, sir. Wholesome, family content here.

Actually, wholesome families play a large role in the proliferation of the unique vehicular phenomenon we’ll be discussing in this QOTD. Families, retirees, and perhaps even you.

Seat covers. Beaded, zebra pattern, faux sheepskin, or perhaps something with a modicum of taste, these decidedly non-factory additions protect your vehicle’s precious fabrics from the ravages of the sun, spilled drinks, butt wear, and all other manner of in-car dangers. It’s a well-known fact that adding seat covers will boost your Kia Spectra’s resale value by several grand, thus preserving not just your seats, but your investment. *Cough*

The thought crossed my mind, after looking at pics of Corey’s base Jetta loaner, that Cruze 2.0’s seat fabric probably won’t hold up over time, being of the bargain-basement variety. Quite the contrast from my previous daily driver, which soaked up ass contact with dignity and aplomb. Nary a rip or wear line with that upholstery.

Do I dare purchase a set, like some sort of desperate Uber driver? The last seat covers in my family stood guard on two fronts — first, they protected the cracked blue vinyl of my dad’s Fairmont sedan from the dangers mentioned earlier, and secondly, they protected our vulnerable backsides from that very same cracked blue vinyl. If you thought this Fairmont came with air conditioning, you’re dreaming. That said, they were the opposite of tasteful. Nowadays, seat covers needn’t look like they originated from an 80-year-old Long Island grandmother’s Seville.

I harbor no belief that seat condition will return big bucks come the car’s eventual trade-in or sale time, but I would feel self-conscious if the low-grade fabric craps out before the car does. I might feel self-conscious with seat covers in place, too, depending on fit and grade. Thankfully, time is on my side. Or so it seems. There’s probably a couple of years before a decision must be made.

But enough about your humble author’s very humble sedan. What about you, dear reader? Are you a family man/woman who chose to protect your precious fabric from gross children and dogs? Are you a working type you doesn’t want to get oil, dirt or grease embedded deep within your vehicle’s seats?

Are you using protection right now, or would such a travesty never find its way into your bastion of road-going perfection?

[Image: Murilee Martin/TTAC]

Join the conversation
2 of 45 comments
  • Pwrwrench Pwrwrench on May 03, 2020

    I remember when the seat back upholstery would wear through people would pull a cotton tee shirt over it. Saw some interesting logos and cartoons on them.

  • -Nate -Nate on May 03, 2020

    And, having a vasectomy 40 years ago and not playing the "Beer Goggle Roulette" means I can ride bareback without worrying =8-) . TMI, I know . -Nate

  • Zerocred So many great drives:Dalton Hwy from Fairbanks to the Arctic Circle.Alaska Marine Highway from Bellingham WA to Skagway AK. it was a multi-day ferry ride so I didn’t actually drive it, but I did take my truck.Icefields Parkway from Jasper AB to Lake Louise AB, CA.I-70 and Hwy 50 from Denver to Sacramento.Hwy 395 on the east side of the Sierras.
  • Aidian Holder I'm not interested in buying anything from a company that deliberately targets all their production in crappy union-busting states. Ford decided to build their EV manufaturing in Tennessee. The company built it there because of an anti-union legal environment. I won't buy another Ford because of that. I've owned four Fords to date -- three of them pickups. I'm shopping for a new one. It won't be a Ford Lightning. If you care about your fellow workers, you won't buy one either.
  • Denis Jeep have other cars?!?
  • Darren Mertz In 2000, after reading the glowing reviews from c/d in 1998, I decided that was the car for me (yep, it took me 2 years to make up my mind). I found a 1999 with 24k on the clock at a local Volvo dealership. I think the salesman was more impressed with it than I was. It was everything I had hoped for. Comfortable, stylish, roomy, refined, efficient, flexible, ... I can't think of more superlatives right now but there are likely more. I had that car until just last year at this time. A red light runner t-boned me and my partner who was in the passenger seat. The cops estimate the other driver hit us at about 50 mph - on a city street. My partner wasn't visibly injured (when the seat air bag went off it shoved him out of the way of the intruding car) but his hip was rather tweaked. My car, though, was gone. I cried like a baby when they towed it away. I ruminated for months trying to decide how to replace it. Luckily, we had my 1998 SAAB 9000 as a spare car to use. I decided early on that there would be no new car considered. I loathe touch screens. I'm also not a fan of climate control. Months went by. I decided to keep looking for another B5 Passat. As the author wrote, the B5.5 just looked 'over done'. October this past year I found my Cinderella slipper - an early 2001. Same silver color. Same black leather interior. Same 1.8T engine. Same 5 speed manual transmission. I was happier than a pig in sh!t. But a little sad also. I had replaced my baby. But life goes on. I drive it every day to work which takes me over some rather twisty freeway ramps. I love the light snarel as I charge up some steep hills on my way home. So, I'm a dyed-in-the-wool Passat guy.
  • Paul Mezhir As awful as the styling was on these cars, they were beautifully assembled and extremely well finished for the day. The doors closed solidly, the ride was extremely quiet and the absence of squeaks and rattles was commendable. As for styling? Everything's beautiful in it's own way.....except for the VI coupe....it's proportions were just odd: the passenger compartment and wheelbase seemed to be way too short, especially compared to the VI sedan. Even the short-lived Town Coupe had much better proportions. None of the fox-body Lincolns could compare to the beautiful proportions of the Mark V.....it was the epitome of long, low, sleek and elegant. The proportions were just about perfect from every angle.