Automotive supplier Adient is showing its latest innovations at the IAA car show.
Andreas Maashoff, Design Director at Adient: “Of course, the demands made of car seats have increased tremendously over the years. With the new trends that are coming up now, like electric driving and self-driving cars, the requirements will increase even more. Especially because in the future, the seats will tend to offer more mobility within the vehicle, which means the safety systems must cover all these different possibilities. It used to be that everything in the car was bolted in place and back then, it all started with safety belts, later airbags were added, but they were all in a fixed position. Nowadays everything is more flexible, more adjustable, and that means the safety systems have to adapt with them, they have to be intelligent, and everything has to be connected and networked.
This car is designed according to a special concept, and we believe that in the future more and more people will want to rent cars instead of buying them outright, and in that case we have defined many usage scenarios that forecast the trends for these vehicles. Of course these vehicles are also autonomous, or they will be capable of self-driving, at least partly. There are some scenarios that rely on a perfectly normal driving mode, like right now. And then there’s a scenario where I switch into conversation mode, and then I can turn the driver’s seat completely around. Then I can sit vis-à-vis, basically it’s like having a mobile office. Or I can decide, since I’ve rented a car, I want to drive across town from A to B, I want to relax, so I can lean the seat very far back so that I’m almost lying down, but I’m still perfectly safe within the context of autonomous driving. If there is someone else in the car with me I can switch to family mode, then the rear seats come out and there’s room to seat four comfortably. So those are the modes that are available for driving in, and they provide a glimpse of what will be possible in the future.”
The automotive supplier is now the world’s largest manufacturer of car seats, with a market share of about 34%. In addition to complete seating units, Adient also develops individual seat components and vehicle interiors.