My wife is shopping for a new car and she's looking at the new 2014 Impalas... I don't want to get into a discussion about how GM sucks or whether that's a good car for the money or what-not, because she's done her shopping and driving and comparing and is pretty sure that's the car she wants. It's her car, so I'm mostly going to stay out of the deal, HOWEVER.. I'm the car-care freak in the family and I'll be the one taking care of it. Here's my question: For 2014, nearly all GM vehicles- except for really low-end vehicles- use what they call "composite wheel house liners". It's the material in the inner fender areas, where you would normally find smooth black plastic. This material is not "carpet", but it's "carpet-like"... kind of a cross between carpet and the material you might find lining the trunk. It's some sort of nylon, according to the car salesman I was talking to this afternoon. He says that the material is for noise reduction and some weight reduction. It's black and looks nice,.. right now. My parents and my in-laws both live on dirt roads, so I drive on a dirt road, probably at least every other day. As much as I dislike that fact, it's not going to change. I'm concerned that once that material gets muddy, brown, dirty, that it'll be near impossible to get it black again. And I'm concerned about how that's going to look. Again, they're putting this on everything, including trucks/SUV's.. They must think it's going to hold up reasonably well.
With the old black plastic, a little silicone-based protectant rubbed on there when I'd clean up the car, turned them a nice dark black color again, and made the mud and dirt tend to slide right off.
What do you think? I'd kind of hate for something like that to end up being a deal-breaker. Anyone have first-hand experience with it? Thanks!