Leather seat


New Member
if you're looking to "replace" than you need to find a custom auto upholstery shop, be prepared for sticker shock.

If you looking for a seat "cover" than I've had good luck with Coverking brand.

Here is my custom neoprene

This was immediately after installing so you can still see some shipping creases.
At first I was upset thinking they sent the wrong ones, thought they were too big.
After taking a deep breath and a little patience they fit excellent.
Good enough that I ordered a set for the back seat the next day.
The middle rear headrest is the only part I didn't like, just not happy with the way it shows a seam.

Wasn't sure I would like the Neoprene but love it.
Almost certain they have a leather option.
still sticker shock probably, if I hadn't caught mine on sale it would had been a little over $500 to do both front and rear.

I installed leather seat covers from Leathercraft ("Seatskinz," got on AutoAnything). Coverking is another trusted brand in leather seat covers, but their prices are significantly higher (and I assume the quality must be better?). Another brand I found while researching is Clazzio, which is cheaper than Coverking but more expensive than Leathercraft. Clazzio and Coverking have lots of options for customizing (for an additional price), like different color stitching, different color center panels, suede, quilted, or perforated center panels, etc. With Leathercraft, I just got regular old black leather. The center panel (where you sit and rest your back) is real leather, perforated (little breathing holes), and the side panels are a vinyl material that looks and feels like a heavy leather. They say the vinyl material helps make sure everything fits as snuggly as possible. Honestly, I would have been happy with all vinyl imitation leather, now that I've seen how nice it is. The seat covers do *not* look like "seat covers." It looks like you have brand new stock upholstery. It's a heavy upholstery-grade material, double stitching, all the attachments are well hidden. I've had them for about half a year now, and they still look like brand new. I expect them to last as long as the car.

Because they fit so snug, and are semi-permanent, there is a bit of work involved in installing them. I had to take the bottom seat portion of the back seats out (which actually is surprisingly easy, it just pulls up and out!). The overall installation took me about two and a half hours. I was fussing a lot, though, to make sure everything was lined up perfectly, which takes patience and massaging. But, once they're in, you'd never know they were covers. Everyone I mentioned it to couldn't believe that they were covers, and not the original upholstery. I highly recommend this as a *much* more affordable alternative to getting the car upholstered. I bought this car (2008 Corolla S manual) used, and the previous owner smoked. There were cigarette burns in the seats, and an ashy smell. I got this Corolla for quite a good deal because of the interior damage, only 45k miles on it, and once I had vacuumed the heck out of the old seats and installed the seat covers, the smoking smell is gone, and it looks like new!

The seat covers themselves had very little odor or off-gas. It smelled faintly like a shoe store in the car for a week or two, and then that faded away.
I'd prefer to remove the original factory cloth material altogether...
and replace with OEM leather instead.
About as close to a factory fit as one can get.

It's what I'd like to install on mine...
But realize it could require an professional install
by someone whom has the patience and ability to install these correctly.

If not DIY, the labor costs to do it would be very expensive.
I found that labor cost to install these would be approaching $ 1,000.
at a local authorized service center.
And it would be wiser to purchase the seat material
from them, rather then another vendor/source.
Installers would likely not warrant the material
if that were purchased from another proprietor.

But if you choose the replacement leather seat covers
and pay for the labor thru an authorized vendor/service...
Both seat material and labor will include a warranty.
That is honored by the installer.

If ya do it yourself...
then the material warranty would be all that's warranted
and one would likely have to go thru their distributor
if needing to file a claim - complaint.


Think I could do my own install...
but I've yet to make that investment.

Installing slip covers would be easier
and less involved for installation.
And is more easily done by DIY folk in their backyard.

But my question would be...
will slip covers installed over the cloth material,
fubar the original cloth material over a long period of time
that they are over laid on the cloth...
and one day may need be removed ?

I can see perforated slip covers...
leaving marks on the cloth material
if those are eventually removed.

And so what would the point of retaining/protecting the original cloth covers ?
I converted mine from cloth to leather. Google roadwire and you can choose any color you want. Mine came out to 1800 out the door for leather seats with heaters installed. Front and back seats.


New Member
Thank you for the comprehensive comments! I am pleased to know their are affordable "leather" options that look great.