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I have always been a GM man, and this 300 is my first and only Chrysler in 35 years. I love the car and only left GM because they stopped making big American cars, in favor of small crap cars that ride like a Japanese tin box. I have a 2006 DTS (Cadillac) in bought new and the leather in it still smells like leather. I know leather...we have several horses..my Daughter competes in dressage and hunter/jumper (look it up). The leather in the DTS has never been treated with auto leather conditioners...boys you are wasting your money with that crap....see below *. When I bought the 300 it had that "new car smell" but not a leather smell. I really didn't care...the car was hypnotic...like suddenly encountering a beautiful woman...I was a deer in the headlights..I wrote the check.:fest30: The 300 still smells new, but not like real leather. Is Chrysler still pushing the Cordoba Corinthian Leather of 1975 with Ricardo Montalbán? You old folks will remember. My build says leather but is it really just vinyl seats.?

* Wasting your money on auto leather conditioners? All auto leather seats have a vinyl coating on it...called "finished leather". ( except for some $100,000 European cars) You can put all the Meguiar's/ Lexoil, etc. or whatever conditioner on it, but it is not absorbed into the leather.........but it smells nice and you feel good. Conditioners are valuable on unfinished leather like horse saddles, and general horse tack. but basically you are paying for nice smelling water.
 

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To the OP, I've wondered the same thing in my C. It's an 05 and still smells good. But I'm not sure what kinda "leather" it is. I owned a 1988 Mercedes 300 in the late 90s. That leather smelled like leather-I would sit in the car and just smell it!
 

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They do use real leather however it is only on the top panels where you sit the rest of the seat is vinyl. They also do use Nappa leather in some models but again only top panels. If you want a complete leather interior Chrysler does do a deal with Kat Skinz which is there oem supplier and you to can get a complete leather interior top sides the works but it costs about $2000. installed and there are some pretty awesome choices available if you want to do it. Probably only likely to be done by someone that has a cloth interior and wants an upgrade.
 

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To the OP, I've wondered the same thing in my C. It's an 05 and still smells good. But I'm not sure what kinda "leather" it is. I owned a 1988 Mercedes 300 in the late 90s. That leather smelled like leather-I would sit in the car and just smell it!
They do use real leather however it is only on the top panels where you sit the rest of the seat is vinyl. They also do use Nappa leather in some models but again only top panels. If you want a complete leather interior Chrysler does do a deal with Kat Skinz which is there oem supplier and you to can get a complete leather interior top sides the works but it costs about $2000. installed and there are some pretty awesome choices available if you want to do it. Probably only likely to be done by someone that has a cloth interior and wants an upgrade.
I think they use nappa leather throughout the 300 range, though I do know the C seems to have nicer leather than the base model I looked at. It is one of the better leathers out there. If you got the JV or Luxury Edition you get leather dash and door panels also.

"Nappa leather is the general term for particularly soft, chrome tanned smooth leather of all animal skin types and fields of use. " Not very specific but gives you an idea.

Regarding conditioners and the vinyl surface, you're not quite correct there. For the most part automotive leathers fall into 3 categories (incidentally on your DTS you could opt for any of the 3)

Non-Aniline : Color is applied to leather by way of basically "painting" the color on. This is what most cars have as it's simple, dirt resistant, and even color. (Cadillac "Nuance" Leather)

Aniline : leather is vat dyed, no "painted surface". Leather furniture, bomber jackets etc. few or no fillers, you see any scars the cow had etc. It will break in and "wear". (Cadillac "Tehama" leather)

Semi-Aniline : Somewhere between the above... (Cadillac "Tuscany" leather)

Even if leather is non-aniline it is generally not a totally water proof surface so leather conditioner does do something. Full aniline leather will soak up water.

Leatherique is the stuff to use, recommended by the Rolls Royce Owners Club.
 

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When I sold my Cadillac it had over 100K on it and the interior still smelled like new leather. I used leather cleaner to keep it looking good but forget what brand.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Regarding conditioners and the vinyl surface, you're not quite correct there. For the most part automotive leathers fall into 3 categories (incidentally on your DTS you could opt for any of the 3)

Non-Aniline : Color is applied to leather by way of basically "painting" the color on. This is what most cars have as it's simple, dirt resistant, and even color. (Cadillac "Nuance" Leather)
While you do know your leathers, I still am correct. Most American cars have non-Aniline,(commonly called finished leather) which have a coating..."painted" on for the reasons you state. When dry, that coating is impermeable to water AND leather conditioners.

Thanks for the replies folks. I knew that only some surfaces were "leather" and side and back was vinyl. I love the 300...just wish it smelled like my DTS...which has non-aniline or finished automotive leather.

Oh, and Terrible Juan...I heard your breath smells like your boyfriend's ------>
 

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See if you can find online a spray scent
 

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While you do know your leathers, I still am correct. Most American cars have non-Aniline,(commonly called finished leather) which have a coating..."painted" on for the reasons you state. When dry, that coating is impermeable to water AND leather conditioners.

Thanks for the replies folks. I knew that only some surfaces were "leather" and side and back was vinyl. I love the 300...just wish it smelled like my DTS...which has non-aniline or finished automotive leather.
Your experience then has been different than mine. I've used this stuff with great success on everything from Bentley, Cadillac, GMC, Explorers, Mazda CX-9 Jaguar, and the "cleaner" on the 300 (hasn't needed rejuvinated yet).
Picture RO and PC Instructions | Leatherique Restoration Products
I have certainly not experienced waterproof car leather.


See if you can find online a spray scent
Interior Car Scent, 4 Ounces - Griot's Garage
I can attest the "leather" smell here smells like a saddle factory/tack shop

Interestingly seems the 300 attracted a few Cadillac people. I had a 2005 STS I bought at 30k and sold at 130k. Basically got the 300 because I felt it was more of a Cadillac than anything Cadillac makes now. I was seriously looking for a DTS with Tehama leather, but the FWD+4speed powertrain lost out. Definitely had more comfy seats than the 300, but overall like everything better in the 300. Will have to see what Cadillac does with the new full size they're working on. `
However, my experience with the STS at least I never noticed a leather smell inside any moreso than my 300. If anything the 300 smells more leathery. Dad's Bentleys still win out on that though.
 

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I have a 300C Luxury Series - even that doesn't smell as good as my old DTS with Tuscany leather. Chrysler interiors smell kinda "chemically" to me, and not necessarily luxurious. The old Chrysler 5th Ave used to have great smelling leather, but that was forever ago.
 

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Wish my STS had the Tuscany. Interesting that the DTS apparently had better smelling interior than the STS. I never noticed a leather smell in the STS.

I do notice a big difference between my 300 and the Mazda CX-9... CX-9 has a very plasticy smell, the 300 smells like wood and leather to me....
 
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