Tesla Owners Say Vegan Seats Have Serious Bubbling Issues

Electric Vehicles / Comments

This is why we peel cows, people.

It has been roughly 48 hours since we posted something negative about a Tesla, which means the situation has to be rectified. To be fair, Tesla keeps on doing weird things, like giving owners the ability to play games while driving.

The quality of Tesla's vegan leather upholstery is the latest bit of news from the house of Musk. And it comes from the Tesla Motors Club, which is the famed EV brand's online forum.

First, what is vegan leather? It's essentially fake leather, made from artificial or plant products. Quite a few manufacturers have moved over to this new seat upholstery, not wanting to peel cows because it's terrible for optics.

gidster99/Tesla Motors Club
gidster99/Tesla Motors Club
Krazymuthafuka/Tesla Motors Club
Krazymuthafuka/Tesla Motors Club

Being the greenest manufacturer of them all, Tesla obviously adopted this strategy a while ago. Many Tesla owners say they don't miss genuine leather at all on the plus side. Faux leather does not crack like real leather and seems more resilient to wear and tear. But, as we've seen with so many Teslas before, not all its cars are built to a high standard. Inside EVs reported on Tesla headrests bubbling last year.

A Tesla Motors Club user called gidster99 complained about his Model 3's driver seat bubbling after a few weeks of hot weather. At the time, the car had 6,500 miles on the clock. He took the car in for a service, and Tesla quoted him $1,400 (roughly $1,880) to fix the problem.

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"After submitting the photos supplied of your driver seat concern for investigation with our engineers, the root cause has been advised is due to anything from lotions, sunscreen, hair sprays or gels, hand sanitizers, e-cigarette or vape pen liquid, cleaning products, and swimming pool chlorine. Due to the issue not being a manufacturing defect and we're unable to process a replacement seat as a warranty claim," replied Tesla.

To be fair, Tesla is not the only company with this problem. Leatherette is more prone to bulling than the real stuff, which is why high-end manufacturers are still willing to sacrifice a few cows for positive customer feedback.

2017-2022 Tesla Model 3 Driving Back View Tesla
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2017-2022 Tesla Model 3 Driving Front Angle Tesla
2017-2022 Tesla Model 3 Forward Vision Tesla

Cheap leatherette is highly susceptible to heat, harsh cleaning materials, moisture, salt, and pressure. The Tesla owner's manual also gives clear instructions as to what cleaning materials should be avoided.

These are the kinds of niggles we talk about when comparing Tesla's quality to legacy manufacturers. We always knew manufacturers like Hyundai would catch up in terms of range, but with the South Korean car, you get the added benefit of it being bolted together correctly.

And before somebody accuses us of only reporting bad things about Tesla, allow us to remind you about that time Autopilot saved the day, not to mention Tesla's generous Christmas gift to its customers.

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