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When entering a luxury car with a leather interior, you notice its aroma, followed by the plush, soft texture. With that said, leather is a mark of elegance for a reason: It’s expensive.
Enter leatherette, a catch-all term for leather alternatives that forgo the intimidating costs. Of course, that doesn’t mean the materials are cheaply made; in fact, many luxury brands use them to excellent effect, including Mercedes’ MB-Tex, BMW’s Sensatec, and Lexus’s NuLuxe.
Below is a detailed rundown of both the good and the bad of the two materials.
Leather: Pros and Cons
The vast majority of car leather comes from cows, and its processing and tanning have a huge effect on the final product.
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The simplest solution to the problem of a cracked windshield would just be to take your car to a repair shop, but if you intend to go the DIY route, you can take on the repair yourself with the right supplies.
Can Your Windshield Be Repaired?
Not all damage is fixable, and windshield replacement might be your only option if any of the following apply:
- The cracks or breaks are at the edges
- Any chips and their surrounding cracks are less than an inch in diameter
- There are two or fewer cracks under eight inches long
- There are fewer than three chips
Keep in mind that even though you can repair chips and cracks that are in your line of sight and make them structurally sound, they won’t be invisible, meaning they may be distracting to stare through as you drive.
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Many factors influence one’s choice of a particular car, but if there’s one metric that’s increasingly essential to the car-buying public, it’s fuel mileage.
With the U.S.’s national average currently nearing $3.50 per gallon, it’s not hard to see why, but thankfully, economical vehicles are available regardless of whether shoppers are looking for gas-only, hybrid, or plug-in hybrid models.
The following vehicles rely solely on their gas engines to power them with no electric assistance whatsoever:
1. Mitsubishi Mirage
MPG: 36 City/43 Highway/39 Combined
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Rustproofing technologies have advanced dramatically over the last 50 years, but that doesn’t mean corrosion is a thing of the past: Cars can and still do rust, and rust itself is a serious issue, as it eats away at metal components, effectively destroying a vehicle’s structural integrity.
That said, rust isn’t a permanent issue, and it can indeed be fixed.
Is Rust Worth Fixing?
Depending on the rust’s location, aesthetics might not matter. Fixing a rusty frame won’t need as much attention to appearance as repairing a rusty fender, for instance.
Here are some indicators that you may want to repair the corrosion:
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You might have heard of “flex-fuel” cars, which can run on normal gasoline or a type of fuel called E85, but at the same time, you might be puzzled by their existence.
As E85 fuel is so rare, it may seem odd for manufacturers to even bother making vehicles that rely on it. Not to mention, cars that run on E85 often get worse mileage — by as much as 25% in some cases — so what’s the point?
E85 Vs. Regular Gas
Despite its name, E85 is a mix of anywhere between 51% and 83% ethanol and regular gasoline. These days, most pumped gas contains at least 10% ethanol, but care must be taken in designing engines and fuel systems for higher ethanol-to-gas ratios, as ethanol is highly corrosive to most of the materials used in standard fuel systems, including aluminum and rubber. It also contains around 33% less energy than regular gasoline.