Front Seat Occupant-Cross Vehicle Location 2008-01-0268
The front seat cross vehicle centerline of occupant is a very critical decision made very early in the vehicle development process. The location of the front seat occupant is a basic building block in setting up the vehicle architecture. Human Vehicle Interface includes everything from simple reach zones to the entire environment the occupant resides in. Compliance testing for multiple Global requirements utilizes the position of the occupant in the vehicle. Many additional vehicle attributes are based off the occupant design position. These include, but are not limited to pedal placement, diagonal head clearance, rear view visibility, down vision, head swing, steering wheel and column placement. Historically, exterior design themes, chassis component location requirements and overall vehicle width dictated occupant centerline location. This did not always lead to an optimized integrated solution from a total vehicle perspective.
A process was developed to help direct front seat centerline of occupant based on an “inside out” approach. A series of seating “modules” consisting of complete seats with appropriate restraints (belts and airbags) were developed in math (UG). The modules included appropriate hand clearance and airbag deployment zones to assure the space claim is complete.
These modules are used very early in the vehicle development process. When the module is set at the requested occupant centerline all other vehicle attributes can be quickly assessed. Appropriate compromises can now be addressed with a much better understanding of total impact.