OK. I'll test the waters to see if they're safe today. (If I listen carefully, I can still hear the "Jaws" theme in the background when I open this forum.)
I thought someone
here might want to know about my experience using a leather treatment product on the seats of my MO. If you don't want to know or don't care or want to argue, then please close this window right now. I'm not addressing you. Thanks.
In the past decade, I've owned or leased three BMWs. That history led me to have some experience with the product sold at those dealerships for treating leather in BMW's vehicles. I'd always found the BWM product to be effective and to have few unpleasant characteristics (in fact, I think the smell is kinda nice). Of course, the leather used in BMWs is (generally) much less "painted" than the leather in "lesser" cars. That is, there is less of a sprayed-on coating that seals/colors the skins. Therefore, a treatment product (cleaner-conditioner made from oils and distillates) can actually penetrate the outer layer and get into the skin to keep it subtle. For those who know about leather, what I'm describing is that the BMW leather is more of the "semi-aniline" variety (i.e., less treated/painted/stamped).
Of course, my experiences with a couple of "lesser" cars since I owned the BMWs (i.e., a Toyota and a Nissan) have shown me just how different the leather can be/is among brands and models. For example, no matter what I put on the Toyota leather, it would not soak into the skin. The painted coating was just too thick. Of course, the seats looked and acted much like the vinyl trim in the car, albeit being stronger/less likely to tear (parts of the vinyl did tear after 4 years). They cracked, looked really shiny, and generally were not worth the money I spent on them. On the other hand, the leather in my Altima was actually willing to accept (absorb) most of the treatment, provided I left it on long enough. Hmmm, I thought, perhaps there is a point to using a leather treatment on Nissan's leather. Sure enough, using the BMW treatment regularly has kept the seats in our '08 Altima mostly subtle and matte looking and very clean.
Enter my '12 Murano and the main point of this post. I can report that I've used the BMW treatment on my MO every month (once a month seems about right) for the past 7 months. The result? Well, I've been very impressed because the leather in the MO not only is clearly of higher quality (i.e., less "painted" and thus softer and more leather-like than vinyl-like) even than the leather in our older Altima, it also appears to benefit as much from the treatment as any BMW I've used the product on. (The MO's leather looks very much like that in the Infiniti JX I test drove last weekend.)
My "news" is that I've proven to myself (remember...I don't care to prove
anything to anyone here), that using this BMW treatment regularly is keeping my MO's leather seats looking pretty much like new for the past 7 months. That is, before I put the treatment on each month, the MO's leather will have gotten to look a bit shiny, a bit dry, and the inevitable creases gained from sitting on the seat look more obvious. In short, the driver's seat trim especially is naturally aging with use, but not in a good way. (Aside: I checked my MO's Owner's Manual and read the statement that the leather needs to be cared for regularly to retain its original appearance, but oddly the manual does not specify what that treatment is). I treat all the seats in the car at the same time, in the same way. I even make sure to treat the steering wheel and the shift knob. The surface of the center console's armrest is vinyl, not leather, so I don't put the BMW treatment on it. (I use Turtle Wax's ICE Premium Interior/Leather treatment instead and I find it works really well on all vinyl and plastic parts. I love that stuff, too.)
I apply the BMW treatment thoroughly and slowly (i.e, I put on a good amount of the product on and then let it sit overnight before lightly buffing it with a dry cloth to make sure I don't get any of it on my clothes. The whole process takes about 20 minutes. The next morning, the MO's leather looks and feels much
more subtle, has regained its matte finish (i.e., is not shiny anymore), and the creases seem to disappear--almost (i.e., the leather seems to "bloom" with the treatment such that creases are "filled in" a bit). I actually like the smell that the treatment gives to the interior of the car. I've even had a few coworkers comment on it (e.g., "it really smells like leather in here") when they've gone for a ride with me. All in all, I think the cost, effort, and especially the outcome are all, I feel, great. I'm a perfectionist, so "great" really means something to me.
I think this is not a bad result of a relatively inexpensive (about $20) product. One bottle has lasted me for the 7 treatments I've given my MO's seats so far. I'll be buying some more this weekend when I visit my Nissan dealer (the BMW dealer is across the street). I will also mention that keeping my leased BMW's seats treated paid off at turn-in time. The guy doing the intake asked me if I'd used anything on the seats. I explained my regimen. He said that he wished all leasees would take such good care of their cars. Of course, he then tried to sell me the leased car because I'd "obviously cared about the car, so why not own it?" My point is, because I used the treatment, the seats looked almost new even after 38K miles.
I can offer some more details, so if anyone cares to hear them, let me know. I'll be glad to offer more of my obsessive-compulsiveness if you ask. For example, I've found that the much-touted "Lexol" brand treatment is rather worthless in that it does not
produce same results (at least on my BMW, Toyota, or older Nissan; I haven't put it on the MO). It even smells bad to my nose. I've tried other types of products which I'm willing to describe too, but I'm done writing this posting for now.