Volvo XC90 Excellence Concept Brings Child Seat to Forefront
Lounge Console Concept Gets Sophisticated Rear-Facing Child Seat
The Volvo XC90 Excellence is the brand’s flagship, with two individual rear seats and a beautifully trimmed center console providing chauffeured passengers with exclusive luxury. The XC90 Excellence Lounge Console Concept brought a new level of decadence by replacing the front passenger seat with a footrest, but one Volvo owner thought that space might be better put to use a different way. The company agreed, and thus the Excellence Child Seat Concept was born.
“We started by asking ourselves if we could make life easier for parents and safer for their children when it comes to the child seat experience,” said Tisha Johnson, Chief Designer Interiors at Volvo Cars Concept and Monitoring Centre. “We focused on three key benefits – making it easier to get the child into and out of the child seat from an ergonomic and comfort perspective, providing the child with a safe rearward facing seating position that enables it to keep eye-contact with either the driver or the rear passenger and of course including enough storage for those vital child accessories, such as diapers, bottles, wipes, and so on.”
By integrating a swiveling infant restraint into the space where the front passenger seat usually resides, Volvo claims the Child Seat Concept is a convenient way to safely transport children in a rear-facing restraint. The seat swivels 90 degrees counterclockwise to allow a parent to buckle his or her child in while standing next to the XC90. The seat’s placement also allows the baby to maintain eye contact with either the driver or a rear-seat passenger. A drawer under the seat pedestal keeps bottles, blankets, and other supplies at close hand, and the “footwell” under the dashboard in front of the seat is large enough for diaper bags and other supplies.
It’s probably safe to assume that the front passenger side airbag is either removed or deactivated in the Child Seat Concept, and the seat’s placement and layout protects a child from unnecessary neck injuries by cradling the child in the event of an accident. In fact, Volvo says that all children under age four should ride in a rear-facing safety seat due to their underdeveloped neck and back muscles and proportionally larger, heavier heads.
While the seating layout is unconventional (particularly for such a large vehicle), Volvo says the Child Seat Concept is more convenient and provides a safer, more emotionally healthy ride for both children and parents.
“Being able to maintain eye contact with your child from the rear seat, or being able to keep a bottle warm in the heated cup holders in the XC90 Excellence, would go a long way toward making life easier for parents taking their small child on a trip,” Johnson said.
Volvo also says that alternative seating positions will become more common as autonomous driving technology becomes more common.
Source: Volvo Cars