The seat can play an important part in improving occupant safety during a car impact. This paper discusses research done to determine how characteristics of seat design affect occupant safety.Impact simulator tests have been run which determine how variation of five specific seat characteristics affect FMVSS 208 occupant injury criteria. These tests simulated a 48.3 km/h (30 mi/h) frontal Oarrier impact using a 50th percentile male anthropomorphic device restrained by a two-point passive shoulder belt system. The five seat characteristics tested were the following: 1) Seat Frame Angle, 2) Seat Frame Structure, 3) H-Point Distance Above the Seat Frame, 4) Energy Absorption of the Seat Frame, and 5) Seat Cushion Foam Firmness. Test results show that the first characteristic can improve all injury criteria. The other four will improve some injury criteria at the expense of others.