The UK, dealer sells second-hand Mercedes, but interiors “are not 100% leather”. Ombudsman rules refund

Leather seats, which are not really made of leather” may be rather costly. A second-hand car retailer, based in Suffolk, England, is fully aware of that: in fact, he was forced to refund one of his clients after selling him some car interiors which proved not to be fully leather in the end. As duly reported by the Daily Mail, a few weeks ago Mr Kerry Costello (right in the picture, taken from, bought a second-hand Cabriolet Mercedes Benz E300, price 35,000 British pounds, at a retailer’s near Bury Saint Edmunds. “Looked like he was driving a bargain”, pointed out the English newspaper, “considering the excellent conditions of the vehicle alongside its black leather interiors”, whose list price would be 912,50 pounds. Yet, once Mr Costello got back home, became suspicious after reading a story, published in the same British newspaper, about another customer: that guy, after buying a Mercedes, had raised doubts about his car interiors, which were not possibly upholstered with genuine leather. Due to his concerns, he decided to send some samples to a lab to have them analysed: he eventually found out that they were made of polyurethane. Therefore, Mr Costello went back to the dealer inquiring about the interiors of his car: he did not get any information though. He consequently called an ombudsman, who got in contact with the German car manufacturing company. They confirmed that seats, despite their being covered with leather, were also made of other materials to ensure “a suitable stiffness”. At that point the judge ruled that Mr Costello should be given a refund, specifically 850 pounds: if car interiors are said to be “leather” seats, then they must be 100% leather.     


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