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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had placed an order for 2019 Cayman back in May, and finally got an allocation with freeze date of 10/24/18 and production date of November 2018. The order remained same through last week.

Wednesday 10/24 when I was playing around with the configurator again, I noticed there has been a switch on the description of the seat that I ordered. The base sports seat in black AG is now described as partial fabric seats while agate color sports seat NO is still partial leather seats as the original order. The black partial leather seats is now code AS with an upcharge of $500.

I contacted my SA yesterday on his day off, and he got back to me with no clarity on what would be executed, but the order went as AG for seats which on the website description is partial fabric while the pictures still shows partial leather seats. However, since order is now locked, it is what it is and can't be upgraded to ensure code of AS, and no way to know until the car arrives what type of seats is actually AG seats. He mentioned that fabric is likely to be Alcantara, and he would want it more than partial leather.

So my question is

1. How well worn is Alcantara beyond 5 years?
2. Should I walk away from a car that has everything else that I wanted, but has seats that is not quite what I ordered, after waiting from May 2018 to Feb 2019? Reorder at that time would probably mean 4 more months even if the dealer makes an allocation available for me right away.
3. Any other "Fabric seats" from Porsche if not Alcantara? I am just surprised Porsche changes the seats and kept the code instead of adding a new code for the new fabric seat.
 

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I believe the Sportex seats are a good alternative to the Alcantara.

I have 14 year old Alcantara seats in my Audi and they are still good, but only 32,000 miles.

I think the Alcantara will wear out faster depending on how you look after it but in my experience it is good for at least 32,000 miles.

The main problem is when you have Alcantara steering wheel and shifter that it does not last as long, but you can always get it recovered.
 

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I specced the leather steering wheel and shifter to avoid the wear concerns.
I did the same in my GTS - sweaty palms will turn Alcantara into a greasy mess. With the seat edges being leather, not Alcantara, I don't think wear on the seat centers / cushions will be terrible over the life of the car. Just be careful with food and drinks in the car.
 

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had the same concerns having seen a 4 year old 911 GTS with alcantara interior which looked "tired" on the drivers seat and worn out on the steering wheel - hence buying a full leather pack interior on my CGTS - I prefer the look and feel of leather as it gives the interior a more "premium" feel in my opinion
 

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Nick Murray on YouTube has some thoughts on alcantara in Porsches. He discusses wear limitations and production costs.

Man made, much less expensive than leather, and unsightly wear characteristics are what I took away from his review.
 

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Alcantara is not to my own personal taste because I feel, like timlaw, that leather lends a more premium look and feel--but then again I'm ordering Bordeaux red leather seats and I'm sure there are plenty of folks who wouldn't have red that at the top of their list for seat color.

I guess what I'm saying is something you already know: the only opinions really matters is yours. Lots of people *love* alcantara and view it as an upgrade; if you're in that camp, then you're all good. One way or another, though, I think you deserve to end up with a car with which you are fully happy, especially because your ordering process has been a lengthy one and it sounds like you've been very patient.

Good luck with whatever you decide, and here's hoping for a happy ending!
 
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I've yet to see a single Porsche (I work for a Porsche Dealership) 718 come in with ANY type of fabric insert in the seats, unless it was ordered that way. The only 2 options that included a fabric material on the inside of the seat centers are both costly options. One is Sport-Tex (which is a high grade, durable cloth which I personally Love and opted for) and the other one is Alcantara. Alcantara is only available as a standard option on GTS models. You can't opt for Alcantara seat inserts on a base or S model 718. What they've always done in the recent past is to offer partial leather on the outside of the seats and faux leather on the seat inserts. The faux leather (fake leather) difficult to tell from real leather, at least in Porsches. I'm not saying the full leather interior is not far superior, because it is. But you would only notice the difference if you sat in them back to back. That being said, I've yet to see a 19 model. It does say Fabric Upholstery Seats for the standard seats in the configurator right now, which I find interesting... I'd also be curious to see if they actually have fabric for the US market, but we'll all find out soon enough. The only Porsche available with a fabric insert on a base model right now, is the base Macan. Which strangely comes with Alcantara inserts. The only other times you are able to get standard fabric inserts on any new Porsche right now is in any of the GTS models, the Carrera T, and GT models. Please enlighten me if I missed something, just because I work for the brand does it mean I'm correct. I'm just basing this on personal experience around Porsches and memory...
 
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My 2019 Base is in Jacksonville, arrived yesterday. I will likely see delivery in the next 7-10 days. It was built in 9/10-12 timeframe so I will be interested in what seats are in it. While the order still listed what I spec'd, I do know that some changes can and do occur in production.
 

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<snips>What they've always done in the recent past is to offer partial leather on the outside of the seats and faux leather on the seat inserts.
I think you have this backwards. AFAIK in the 'partial leather' the centre (perforated) and (possibly) the bolsters and headrest are the real leather and the sides and backs are the faux.:)
 

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Alcantara can hold up just as well as leather. Most of the times when you see matted down or seemingly destroyed material is because people don’t know how to care for it properly. It is a synthetic material designed to aid in grip. The fibers are kind of like microfiber in a sense where they collect dirt or debris with whatever it comes into contact with. I have typically used a wet scruffy hand cloth with a dab of dawn dish soap to agitate the material. That helps release oil and dirt while the hand cloth helps lift the fibers back to normal. You don’t want to use too much water or soap otherwise you’ll soak your seats or steering wheel etc. Once done you can let it air dry.
 

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I have not had alcantara on any Porsche as yet but did have an 08TT with alcantara on the seating surfaces and drove the car for a couple years as a DD with 0 issues while doing the basic care/upkeep similar to what 'cipher' suggested. I would prefer not having it on the steering wheel based on the amount of oil that the hands naturally deposit in daily use....just my preference. I recall what the alcantara steering wheel looked like on the 550 Maranello race car we had in Team Rafanelli (Olive Garden...) after one season. And, this was with drivers wearing gloves.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thank you for all of the input. Looks like I won't really know what the seat will look like until it gets here. I had not fallen in love with the Alcantara because one of the loaner car when I had my Macan in for service had the Alcantara that was somewhat dirty. Once I started driving, the seat was invisible and felt fine, but did not necessarily gave me "great" or "bad" feel to the experience.

I would hate to walk away from the car after waiting from May to February (nine months) because of the seat, but this last minute website description switch on my lock date from Porsche makes it unnerving. Hopefully they will make the car with the old description from when configuration was made.
 

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Alcantara does occasionally need some maintenance and a clean particularly on high traffic areas like steering wheel and shifter.

SONAX XTREME Upholstery & Alcantara cleaner works great for those areas and you can see the dirt wipe off. Can also be used on seats to freshen them up.

I've also used 3M Scotchgard on alcantara seats before if you want a bit of extra protection but not sure if it really needs it.
 

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I have had Alcantara in a couple of previous cars and had Porsche offered it on the sports plus seats, I would probably have opted for it. The base 2 way sports seats in Europe have vinyl/alcantara which ironically are probably the best combo for a daily car as the bolsters will hold up a lot better. I bought specialist Alcantara cleaner and never had to use it, a brush/vacuum was sufficient. I viewed that Kiwi's video on Alcantara and whilst he's entitled to his opinion, I do not agree with it. I don't see why because someone who has a GoPro and a YouTube channel should suddenly be considered an expert, it's just his opinion. Porsche recently gave me a couple of loan Boxsters with the Alcantara wheel/PDK shifter and I didn't like it but it's fantastic on the seats. It's a shame that the standard base interior here in the UK/Europe don't have any Alcantara on the doors. If ordering a GTS, I would definitely go for the GTS Alcantara interior.
 

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I think you have this backwards. AFAIK in the 'partial leather' the centre (perforated) and (possibly) the bolsters and headrest are the real leather and the sides and backs are the faux.:)
You're correct! I said that wrong. I was attempting to state the back as the center and the sides as the side bolsters. The side bolsters and headrest are leather, and the center of the seat and the actual sides of the seats are the "partial or faux" leather. The back of the seats are usually hard she'll plastic, if I remember correctly...
 

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I am getting ready to lock in my configuration for my order and started getting paranoid about going with alcantara based on all of the 'high wear' comments. I'm not sure I understand the concern since I just looked at every used GTS in the States on autotrader with over 90K miles. Almost every single one showed significantly less wear on the inserts then the leather surrounding them. Am I missing something here?
 
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