“Mind If I Scan Your Butt, Sir?”
If you’re one of those people who has an overwhelming urge to photocopy your rear end, your prayers may have been answered by some new seat technology Porsche recently announced.
For the rest of us, getting comfortable in an aggressive bucket seat is not always that simple. ‘One size fits all’ really doesn’t apply in today’s world of unusually shaped rear ends! You need to be tightly confined to restrict the movement of the body under cornering, however, there is a difference between comfortably tight and a plum crushing squeeze. Thankfully, Porsche has an innovative technical solution….
Personalized seat shells customized for the driver, have been standard in race cars for a long time now. Essentially, this is achieved by the driver sitting on a bag filled with expanding foam and glue. The foam shifts with the weight and will exactly fit the contours of his or her body. Once the glue hardens a perfect match of foam seat to rear end is created! For the economy racer, you simply make the foam part of the seat. For the less budget conscious, like F1 teams, you scan the foam imprint and use a 3D model to make a lightweight carbon fiber seat.
This, of course, is not practical for everyday street cars. However, Porsche has made a step in that direction with their new “3D-printed body-form seat” option. Here, the central section of the seat is partly produced by a 3D-printer. Customers will be able to choose between three firmness levels (hard, medium, soft) for the comfort layer.
The “3D-printed body-form full-bucket seat” features a sandwich style construction of a base support made from expanded polypropylene and a bonded breathable comfort layer consisting of a mixture of polyurethane-based materials. This comfort layer is produced using the 3D printer.
What They Politely Forgot To Mention
What they failed to mention here is, they’re going to need to scan your butt! To make a personalized seat, clearly you need to start with the personal shape. The best way to achieve that is to scan the shape you need for the production line 3D printer. So, does this mean Porsche will be creating a “butt scanner” and shipping it to each dealership? Or will a reasonable good photocopier do the same job? “So to complete your order Madam, all I need to do is scan your bottom!” Sounds like marvelous fun and games.
Your Butt Coming To A seat Near You Soon
The “3D-printed body-form full-bucket seat” will be available from Porsche Tequipment as a driver’s seat for the 911 and 718 ranges from as early as May 2020. The range will initially be limited to 40 seat prototypes for use on race tracks in Europe in combination with a six-point seat belt.
Porsche says feedback from customers will be incorporated into the development process and as a next step, street-legal “3D-printed body-form seats” will be available from mid-2021. Maybe, it will soon be time to rush over to the dealer and get your arse scanned!