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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,


I'm here as a long time lurker, former 451 owner, who's planning on special ordering a new 453 Proxy in November, but I'm on the fence about the white leather (MB-Tex?) seating. More specifically, I'm worried that the white leather may show it's age and wear and tear much quicker than the alternate black leather seating of the Prime model.


Is there anyone here who currently drives a Proxy, or any other vehicle with white leather seating surfaces that can attest to how comparable, or more difficult, they can be to maintain and care for in comparison to the standard black leather interior?


Perhaps I should just forget leather altogether, and order a fully loaded Passion instead with the black/orange cloth interior....thoughts?


Thanks for the feedback!




Keith
 

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laszlo,

I don't have a white leather car interior but I think it will be just fine. No better or worse than black. As long as you keep ink pens away from it and even that can be removed. I say yay!

hartmn
 

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You could always get clear, plastic seat covers like we all had in the late 50's, early 60's.
My grandmother as well as many other relatives of mine had clear plastic covers on their couches and couch pillows. I grew up with that. A nice plush couch that was almost impossible to sit on for an extended period of time. Only a matter of time before you slip and slide your way down to the floor, smooth off the couch. :D
 

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My 450 Diesel had custom built white seat covers. No major problems keeping them clean. I have no problem keeping my Proxy clean also.
You just have to continually wipe down the interior even if it doesn't show any signs of markings. The only minor problem is the drivers inside door panel. My hand is always on the handle to push open the door. A little "409" sprayed on a clean white cotton cloth does the trick.
The cloth always shows a little black on it even if you think it was clean.

My wife ALWAYS parks her car so close to mine that I have to struggle to get my foot out the door. I had various black marks on the bottom of the door. I had a small piece of aluminum that I cut to size, painted it white and used contact cement and glued it to the door.
No more marks on the door panel.
 

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The dyes from jeans will transfer and will be an annoyance if your interior gets dirty. Only dare do it if you don't mind the maintenance of wiping your interior down every week.

Yeah, I have a Cadillac CTS with a darker tan interior that I use Lexol cleaner and conditioner every week on. I'm fairly OCD about interior maintenance, so I think I'll be fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
My 450 Diesel had custom built white seat covers. No major problems keeping them clean. I have no problem keeping my Proxy clean also.
You just have to continually wipe down the interior even if it doesn't show any signs of markings. The only minor problem is the drivers inside door panel. My hand is always on the handle to push open the door. A little "409" sprayed on a clean white cotton cloth does the trick.
The cloth always shows a little black on it even if you think it was clean.

My wife ALWAYS parks her car so close to mine that I have to struggle to get my foot out the door. I had various black marks on the bottom of the door. I had a small piece of aluminum that I cut to size, painted it white and used contact cement and glued it to the door.
No more marks on the door panel.

Yeah, I'm definitely leaning towards the Proxy at this point, and the responses here have helped nudge me closer to a decision (I have to make up my mind by November 15, since that's when they'll be taking their next wave of quarterly orders.

Since you own a Proxy, I must ask, are the interior panels, especially the door panels, solid white plastic or painted? I've seen interior panels in other cars become dull because the paint would gradually rub off from regular cleaning, and the true color of the urethane plastic would show through. It feels like the surfaces of the 453's with black interiors are painted to a certain degree, but I'm not sure about the white interiors...
 

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Proxy White Interior

The blue is a type of fabric. Very unique looking. The white on the seats is a type of leather. The white on the door panels feels like a matte finish smooth "wallpaper". It seems to be very durable as I had cleaned it numerous times where I "kicked" the lower portion of the door when exiting the car. I figured that I might destroy this part with the constant cleaning so I decided to install the painted aluminum which I assumed was more durable.

I think Mercedes used the BEST material in the interior. Since the PROXY is the top of the line model I would assume that they would use the finest material available. Only time will tell.

P.S. I am a private individual working as a "SALESMAN" for smart. I have been stopped so many times to answer questions about this smart that I should be paid for acting as a salesman. When I had my 2005 smart Passion DIESEL here in 2005, I would park the car, go shopping and come back and see hand prints on the door windows. If I came back and someone was looking at the smart, I would answer all their questions. It got to the point that I printed up a five page fact sheet and handed out to people interested in the smart.

I have purchased about 20 new vehicles in my lifetime. The absolute best treatment I have ever received from a dealer is West Covina SMART in the Los Angeles area. (salesman to see) Mister_Smart_LA Posts here all the time.
 

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White Leather "Proxy" interior....yay or nay?

The white on the seats is a type of leather.


In the interest of accuracy, the white on the seats is 0% animal product; no leather whatsoever.

Leather is only offered on the Prime package, even though smart uses a leathery sort of fine-grade pseudo word to describe the Proxy seats. It sounds better than plastic.
 

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The Artico vinyl for seating used in Mercedes these days is total rubbish and cracks after a couple of years in normal use. You have been warned.
 

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The Artico vinyl for seating used in Mercedes these days is total rubbish and cracks after a couple of years in normal use. You have been warned.


Mike, the bad batch of MB-Tex was a long time ago, and limited to improperly manufactured product from one foreign supplier. When MBZ became aware of that situation, it was quickly corrected (years ago). Please don't keep saying there's a current issue when there's not. MB-Tex simulated leather is a fine product, known for its durability, and with a very loyal following. There is no reason to think that smart's product would not wear well. Please discuss fairly!
 

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I have owned a Charger, and a Vette in the past with white interior... NO MORE, that's it...!!! I love White, as long as someone else OWNS IT...!!!
 

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Can you explain this service bulletin from 2016 then?


No. But I have a feeling you can.

Are you saying that this bulletin is broader in scope than the known "bad batch" of Artico/MB-Tex material? Or, is this bulletin specific to that bad batch?

How do you/we know that the bulletin applies to current model cars? A 2016 bulletin does not necessarily suggest 2016 model-year cars. What range of years are affected?

What's the Ártico/MB-Tex incidence rate for splitting? And how does that compare to leather splitting, for example? A bulletin does not necessarily indicate a high rate of seat cover failures.

At what car age/mileage are the covers splitting? Have the sun, heat, or upholstery color (darkness) been contributory factors? Have recommended UV protectants been applied to seat covers that have failed due to sun or heat?


Mike, what I'm saying is that, unless you have better info upon which to make a wide-based claim that would have relevance to the specific material used in the smart Proxy, then it's best to throw in a few qualifiers instead of making blanket all-encompassing disparaging assertions that are likely to alarm current and prospective Proxy buyers. Given the lengthy history of MB-Tex material, I find it hard to believe that the product would have a terribly high failure rate, unless other unusual circumstances were involved.
 

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Can you explain this service bulletin from 2016 then?
MB-Tex has a tremendously long history that extends way above and beyond the scope of a relatively tiny MB-Tex seat cover replacement campaign. Generally speaking, the MB-Tex materials have been extremely durable in comparison to leather.

I still personally prefer the look and feel of genuine leather though. But over the years, that MB-Tex has definitely improved in its look and quality. The "artificial leather" seats in the new 2016+ smart pure coupes, sure seem to scream MB-Tex in look and feel even if smart USA isn't officially using the MB-Tex branding of them. If I had to place a bet, it's the same material. Now that MB-Tex has been around for well over a decade, I suppose it has come down in cost enough for smart to offer it in their low priced vehicles.
 
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