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Porsche to Launch 3D-Printed Personalized Bucket Seats Next Year

Ever since 3D printers came to be not so many years ago, it was a sure thing they would soon revolutionize the manufacturing industry. Although still a long way from actually making a difference in today's production processes, 3D printing, or additive manufacturing as it is also known, will probably became mainstream in the not-so-distant future.
Porsche partially 3D printed bucket seat 5 photos
Porsche 3D printed bucket seatPorsche 3D printed bucket seatPorsche 3D printed bucket seatPorsche 3D printed bucket seat
In the auto industry, 3D printing has only been marginally embraced, and the number and type of parts produced this way is still limited. Yet, several carmakers are researching more evolved techniques for the production of parts.

The latest announcement in this respect comes from Porsche, who said this week that as of May 2020, it will start testing 40 partially 3D-printed seat prototypes on racetracks across Europe. If all goes well, we should see them go into series production in 2021 for the 911 and 718 ranges.

Officially called 3D-printed bodyform full-bucket seat, the product comprises a base support made from expanded polypropylene and a breathable comfort layer (seat and backrest cushions) made from a mixture of polyurethane-based materials.

It is this latter component that is 3D-printed and, according to Porsche, this would allow customers to choose from three firmness levels - hard, medium, soft - and three colors.

This in turn makes the new Porsche seats similar to the ones used in motorsports in terms of layout, weight and so on.

“The seat is the interface between the human and the vehicle, and is thus important for precise, sporty handling. That’s why personalised seat shells customised for the driver have been standard in race cars for a long time now,” said in a statement Michael Steiner, Member of the Executive Board for Research and Development at Porsche.

“With the ‘3D-printed bodyform full-bucket seat’, we’re once again giving series-production customers the opportunity to experience technology carried over from motor sports.”

press release

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