Advantages of Bucket Seats
Bucket seats are specially designed car seats that feature contoured bolsters around the back, hips, and thighs to provide additional support and grip. These seats are widely used in high-performance and sports cars because of their ability to hold the driver and passengers in place during high-speed maneuvers, preventing them from sliding around or shifting. Bucket seats can also help reduce your car's weight over regular seats due to not having additional electric motors, fans and vents. They are also stiffer when compared to regular seats too which helps to further secure the driver and front passenger in place.
Bucket seats tend to be better than stock seats in several ways. First, they offer better lumbar support, which reduces fatigue and discomfort during long drives. Second, they provide more lateral support, which helps to prevent body roll and improves handling. However, certain seats won't have adjustable features, such as tilt, height, and lumbar support, so be mindful of your personal size constraints and seating position in order to get maximum comfort and control.
Brands of Bucket Seats
There are several brands of bucket seats out there with each of these brands offering a range of seats with different features and styles, from entry-level sport seats to high-end racing seats.
Recaro is one of the most well-known and respected brands in the automotive industry used by driving legends Ayrton Senna, Steve Mcqueen and Ken Block to name a few as they offer a wide range of seats for both street and track use. Made in the UK, Cobra Seats are also worth looking at and have a great reputation among motorsports enthusiasts and F1 racing drivers across the world including Lewis Hamilton and Martin Brundle who have used them in their own cars. Bride is known for its JDM style racing seats, which feature unique designs and colors. Made to perfectly compliment Japanese car interiors, Bride seats have been a favourite of the legendary Japanese racing driver and "Drift King" Keiichi Tsuchiya and professional drift driver and Red Bull athlete Mad Mike Whiddett.
How Are Bucket Seats Made?
They can be made from a variety of materials, depending on the brand, style, and intended use of the seat, with the most common being fabric. Thanks to it's versatility it is used in a range of bucket seats, from entry-level sport seats to high-end racing seats. Available in different colors and patterns the types of fabrics used tend be made from nylon, polyester, or alcantara. Fabric seats a great choice all year round as they are comfortable to sit on regardless of it the weather is hot or cold, but can be less durable than leather or suede.
In terms of structural materials both steel and carbon fibre tend be used to make bucket seats. Carbon fibre is incredibly strong but also lightweight and is often used in high-performance bucket seats, providing good support and safety, but can be expensive. Steel is the most commonly used material in racing seats, as it also offers excellent strength and safety, making it ideal for high-impact applications.
Choosing a Bucket Seat
Choosing the right bucket seat is an important decision, as it can significantly impact your driving experience. Here are some factors to consider when choosing a bucket seat:
1. Purpose: If it's primarily a street car, you may want a seat that's comfortable for long drives. If it's a race car or track car, you may prioritize a seat with maximum support and safety features.
2. Comfort: Look for a seat with good lumbar support, as well as comfortable padding and material. The seat should fit your body well, without being too tight or restrictive.
3. Adjustability: Bucket seats often have more adjustable features than stock seats. Look for a seat with adjustable height, tilt, and lumbar support to ensure a comfortable and customized fit.
4. Safety: Consider the safety features of the seat, such as the strength of the shell and the whether it can be used with a harness. Look for seats that are FIA certified for maximum safety.
5. Style: Available in a range of styles and designs, consider what fits your personal style and the overall aesthetic of your vehicle before commiting to making a purchase.
6. Budget: Prices can vary significantly in price, so consider your budget when choosing a seat. Keep in mind that a higher price may offer better features and quality, but there are also affordable options that offer good value.
Ultimately, the choice of bucket seat will depend on the specific needs and preferences of the driver. It's important to consider factors such as comfort, adjustability, and style when choosing a seat, as well as the intended use of the vehicle.