Seating Configuration Concepts for Chrysler
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Turning the human cargo hold into a family room
The minivan, once a groundbreaking vehicle, was declining in both sales and public opinion. Hoping to reinvigorate the market, Chrysler asked IDEO to re-imagine the minivan concept, particularly potential seating configurations.
IDEO sought ways to satisfy the emotional and lifestyle needs of contemporary families on the go. Our observations of parents and kids suggested that the minivan could serve as a space for connection and socialization, much like a family room. Further research showed that the van’s traditional seating (a trio of bus-like rows) discouraged rather than enabled interactions among passengers. In response, IDEO conceived a flexible, versatile minivan interior design that encouraged interactions.
The new seating configuration concepts allow passengers to talk, work, eat, or play together in transit. This shifts the minivan’s image from one of a human cargo vehicle to one that enables quality interpersonal interactions. IDEO’s concepts helped inspire Chrysler to build an interior with two second-row bucket seats that rotate 180-degrees, allowing passengers in the middle and back of the vehicle to sit facing one another, with a removable table between them. The design, now known as Swivel ’n Go, is available in Chrysler’s popular Town and Country minivans.
According to Car and Driver Magazine, “Swivel ’n Go has the wow factor to draw people into the showroom and solidify Chrysler’s minivan leadership.”
Project date: 2008