Luxury Cars: The Evolution of Interiors

The Evolution Of Luxury Car Interiors

Luxury Cars: The Evolution of Interiors

22nd August 2019


When we hear ‘luxury cars’, we think fine leather seats, a gleaming dashboard and a sleek steering wheel. We dream about climbing inside, sitting back, and enjoying a smooth ride to wherever we’re headed.

Luxury has become synonymous with comfort – and the modern-day vehicles carrying the ‘luxury cars’ label are going above and beyond to craft interiors that feel as good as they look.

But it wasn’t always this way. Let’s see how prestigious car interiors have evolved over time.


Turn of the century: The first taste of luxury

When the car was first integrated into American society, it was considered a luxury in itself. But as these vehicles began to flood the country, Cadillac (who else?) decided to up the ante and cater to the wealthier crowd – creating a closed-bodied car that actually protected drivers from the elements.

After 1910, the finer vehicles began to introduce components such as heat and lighting. And, as cheaper models found the funds to follow suit, a game of one-upmanship began – with luxury brands fitting their interiors with all kinds of impressive and innovative new features.

In the 1930s, there were even cars fitted with their own bars. Rules on drinking and driving were a little different back then…


The mid-1900s: Create your own climate

The 1940s saw the introduction of windows that didn’t require a brawny arm to roll up and down. But this point in history also saw the first appearance of the air conditioner. Within the next two decades, classy Cadillacs with climate control buttons lined the streets – giving drivers the power to actually change the ventilation in their vehicles.

What a time to be alive, they must have thought.

Heated seats also arrived much earlier than you might have guessed – the 1960s, no less. There was even the brief introduction of a functioning mini kitchen in some luxury cars during this time (which would later be reduced to safer, more convenient compact fridges).


2000 onwards: Technology takes control

The new millennium saw technology find its way into car interiors – and less than twenty years later, they’re essentially driving themselves.

Today’s luxury cars aren’t just comfy. They turn the driver into another passenger – with the likes of cruise control, power steering, touch-screen interfaces and voice control features doing all the hard work. The lucky person behind the wheel simply needs to press the pedals from time to time.

Yet while the luxury criteria for vehicle interiors has changed so much over the past century, there has remained one constant feature of class: leather. From deep-buttoned, quilted upholstery in 1900s Cadillacs, to tan vintage-style bucket seats in the 1950s and 60s, to the perforated variety in the modern day, this material has remained as synonymous with stylish cars as a hefty price-tag.

Yep. Leather remains as glamorous, popular and prevalent today as it did all those years ago – and not just in the automobile sector.


Photo by Matthew Henry on Unsplash