US20070296258A1 - Rear seat extended fold and kneel reconfiguration - Google Patents

Rear seat extended fold and kneel reconfiguration Download PDF

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Publication number
US20070296258A1
US20070296258A1 US11/475,569 US47556906A US2007296258A1 US 20070296258 A1 US20070296258 A1 US 20070296258A1 US 47556906 A US47556906 A US 47556906A US 2007296258 A1 US2007296258 A1 US 2007296258A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
vehicle
seat
assembly
linkage
seat assembly
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US11/475,569
Inventor
Kyle Calvert
Alexander Jorg Koblischke
Original Assignee
Kyle Calvert
Alexander Jorg Koblischke
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Publication date
Application filed by Kyle Calvert, Alexander Jorg Koblischke filed Critical Kyle Calvert
Priority to US11/475,569 priority Critical patent/US20070296258A1/en
Publication of US20070296258A1 publication Critical patent/US20070296258A1/en
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B60VEHICLES IN GENERAL
    • B60NSEATS SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLES; VEHICLE PASSENGER ACCOMMODATION NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • B60N2/00Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles
    • B60N2/24Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles for particular purposes or particular vehicles
    • B60N2/30Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats
    • B60N2/3002Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats back-rest movements
    • B60N2/3004Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats back-rest movements by rotation only
    • B60N2/3009Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats back-rest movements by rotation only about transversal axis
    • B60N2/3013Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats back-rest movements by rotation only about transversal axis the back-rest being hinged on the vehicle frame
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B60VEHICLES IN GENERAL
    • B60NSEATS SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLES; VEHICLE PASSENGER ACCOMMODATION NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • B60N2/00Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles
    • B60N2/02Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles the seat or part thereof being movable, e.g. adjustable
    • B60N2/22Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles the seat or part thereof being movable, e.g. adjustable the back-rest being adjustable
    • B60N2/2209Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles the seat or part thereof being movable, e.g. adjustable the back-rest being adjustable by longitudinal displacement of the cushion, e.g. back-rest hinged on the bottom to the cushion and linked on the top to the vehicle frame
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B60VEHICLES IN GENERAL
    • B60NSEATS SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLES; VEHICLE PASSENGER ACCOMMODATION NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • B60N2/00Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles
    • B60N2/24Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles for particular purposes or particular vehicles
    • B60N2/30Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats
    • B60N2/3038Cushion movements
    • B60N2/3063Cushion movements by composed movement
    • B60N2/3065Cushion movements by composed movement in a longitudinal-vertical plane
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B60VEHICLES IN GENERAL
    • B60NSEATS SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR VEHICLES; VEHICLE PASSENGER ACCOMMODATION NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • B60N2/00Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles
    • B60N2/24Seats specially adapted for vehicles; Arrangement or mounting of seats in vehicles for particular purposes or particular vehicles
    • B60N2/30Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats
    • B60N2/3088Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats characterised by the mechanical link
    • B60N2/309Non-dismountable or dismountable seats storable in a non-use position, e.g. foldable spare seats characterised by the mechanical link rods

Abstract

A vehicle seat assembly of the present embodiment is positionable in a vehicle passenger compartment and attachable to a vehicle floor. The seat assembly includes a seat bottom, a seat back, and a five-bar linkage assembly pivotally attaching the seat back to the seat bottom. The five-bar linkage assembly includes a forward linkage, a rear linkage, and a folding linkage which allows movement of the vehicle seat assembly from an upright to a folded assembly.

Description

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • 1. Field of the Invention
  • The invention relates to a seat assembly that is extendable in a forward direction and stows in a minimal space.
  • 2. Background Art
  • Prior art vehicle seat assemblies include a seat back pivotally attached to a seat bottom. These prior art assemblies allow movement of the seat back from upright to folded positions. In one specific assembly, the seat back is attached to the seat bottom via a four-bar mechanism. Such a four-bar seat assembly is set forth in U.S. Pat. No. 6,578,919. Although such four-bar seats have been used successfully in rear seat vehicle applications, current automotive design trends require rear seats that occupy a lower amount of space when such seat assemblies are in the folded position. Unfortunately, the four-bar mechanism provides a somewhat limited range of motion making it difficult for such seats to meet the more current automobile design requirements and to conform to curbed vehicle floors.
  • Accordingly, there exists a need for improved vehicle seat assemblies with lower package space and near zero degree load floor angle.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention solves one or more problems of the prior art by providing in at least one embodiment a vehicle seat assembly. The vehicle seat assembly of the present embodiment is positionable in a vehicle passenger compartment and attachable to a vehicle floor. The seat assembly includes a seat bottom, a seat back, and a five-bar linkage assembly pivotally attaching the seat back to the seat bottom. The five-bar linkage assembly includes a forward linkage, a rear linkage, and a folding linkage. The forward linkage has a first forward linkage end and a second linkage end. The forward linkage end pivotally attaches to a forward location of the seat bottom at a first pivot position, and the second forward linkage end pivotally attaches to the vehicle floor at a second pivot position. Similarly, the rear linkage has a first rear linkage end and a second rear linkage end. The first rear linkage end pivotally attaches to a rear location of the seat bottom at a third pivot location, and the second end pivotally attaches to the vehicle at a fourth pivot position. Finally, the folding linkage has a first folding linkage end and a second folding linkage end. The first folding linkage end pivotally attaches to the third pivot location, and the second folding linkage end pivotally attaches to a fifth pivot position. Advantageously, the five-bar linkage assembly allows for movement of the seat bottom in a forward direction as the seat back folds downward to a folded position thereby providing minimal package space.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 is a side view of the vehicle seat assembly of the invention with a seat back in an upright position;
  • FIG. 2 is a side view of the vehicle seat assembly of the invention with a seat back in a folded position;
  • FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the vehicle seat assembly of the invention with a seat back in an upright position;
  • FIG. 4A is a side view of an embodiment of a seat assembly in the closed position;
  • FIG. 4B is a side view of an embodiment of a seat assembly in an intermediate position between the closed and design position;
  • FIG. 4C is a side view of an embodiment of a seat assembly in the design position; and
  • FIG. 4D is a side view of an embodiment of a seat assembly in a reclined position.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT(S)
  • Reference will now be made in detail to presently preferred compositions or embodiments and methods of the invention, which constitute the best modes of practicing the invention presently known to the inventors.
  • With reference to FIGS. 1, 2, and 3, schematic illustrations of an embodiment of a vehicle seat assembly of the present invention is provided. FIG. 1 is a side view of the vehicle seat assembly of the invention with a seat back in an upright position. FIG. 2 is a side view of the vehicle seat assembly of the invention with a seat back in a folded position. FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the vehicle seat assembly of the invention with a seat back in an upright position. Seat assembly 10 includes a seat bottom that includes seat bottom frame 12, and a seat back which includes seat back frame 14. The seat bottom is pivotally attached to the seat back by five-bar linkage assembly 16. Typically, such attachment is made by pivotally attaching seat bottom frame 12 to seat back frame 14. Seat assembly 10 is also pivotally attached to vehicle floor 18 via five-bar linkage assembly 16. Typically, such attachment is accomplished by one or more attached brackets 20, 22. In one variation of the present embodiment, brackets 20, 22 are distinct brackets that attach vehicle seat assembly 10 to vehicle floor 18. In another variation of the present embodiment, brackets 20, 22 are an integral part of vehicle floor 18. The seat bottom (and seat bottom frame 12) includes front side 24, rear side 26, left side 28, and right side 30. Similarly, seat back 14 includes top side 32, bottom side 34, left side 36 and right side 34.
  • Still referring to FIGS. 1, 2, and 3, five-bar linkage assembly 16 includes forward linkage 40 having first forward linkage end 42 and second linkage end 44. First forward linkage end 42 is pivotally attached to forward location 46 of the seat bottom via seat bottom frame 12 at first pivot position 48. Similarly, second forward linkage end 44 is pivotally attached to vehicle floor 18 via bracket 22 at a second pivot position 50. Five-bar assembly 16 also includes rear linkage 60 which includes first rear linkage end 62 and second rear linkage end 64. First rear linkage end 62 is pivotally attached to rear location 66 of the seat bottom at third pivot location 68. Second rear linkage end 64 pivotally attaches vehicle floor 18 at a fourth pivot position 70 via bracket 20. Five-bar linkage assembly 16 also includes folding linkage 80. Folding linkage 80 has first folding linkage end 82 and second folding linkage end 84. First folding linkage end 82 is pivotally attached to third pivot location 68. Second folding linkage end 84 pivotally attaches to fifth pivot position 90 which is also pivotally attached to seat back frame 14. Collectively, five-bar linkage assembly 16 allows for movement of the seat bottom in a forward direction as the seat back folds downward. Seat back frame 14 is also pivotally attached to bracket 20 at sixth pivot position 92 which is attached to vehicle floor 18. The attachment of seat back frame 14 at sixth position 92 provides stability to vehicle seat assembly 10. Seat back frame 14 is held in the upright position by a mechanism known in the art of vehicle seat technology. FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrate a latching mechanism in which stop pin 96 engages stopping surface 98 to keep seat back frame 14 in the upright position.
  • Stilling referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, vehicle seat assembly 10 is moveable from an upright position as illustrated in FIG. 1 to a folded position as illustrated in FIG. 2. During motion from the upright to the folded position the seat back (and seat back frame 12) moves along curved direction d1 while the seat bottom (and seat bottom frame 12) moves forward along direction d2. Moreover, the seat bottom (and seat bottom frame 12) also moves downward when seat assembly 10 is folded. In one variation, seat assembly 10 has a load floor angle of less than 10 degrees when in the folded position. The load floor angle is defined as angle A1 as illustrated in FIG. 2. Specifically, the load floor angle is the angle between the seat back in the upright and folded positions. In another variation of the present embodiment, seat assembly 10 has a load floor angle of less than 5 degrees when in the folded position. In yet another variation of the present embodiment, seat assembly 10 has a load floor height angle of about 0 degrees when in the folded position. In still another variation of the present embodiment, seat assembly 10 has a load floor angle from about 0 to about 5 degrees when in the folded position. When in the folded position, vehicle seat assembly 10 advantageously allows a reduction in height h1 as compared to prior art vehicle seat assemblies.
  • With reference to FIG. 3, the positioning of two five-bar linkage assemblies 16, 16′ on opposing sides of seat bottom frame 12 and seat back frame 14 is provided. As set forth above, seat bottom frame 12 includes left side 28 and right side 30 while seat back frame 14 includes left side 36 and right side 34. Five-bar assembly 16 attaches right side 30 of seat bottom frame 12 to the right side 38 of seat back frame 14. Second five-bar linkage assembly 16′ pivotally attaches left side 28 of seat bottom frame 12 to the left side 36 of seat back frame 14. Five-bar assemblies 16, 16′ are substantially the same and described above in detail.
  • With reference to FIGS. 4A-D, a series of schematic side views of the seat assembly of the invention at various positions is provided. FIG. 4A provides a side view of seat assembly 10 in the closed position. In this view, the ability of the present invention to conform to the shape of vehicle floor 18 is provided. In FIG. 4A, vehicle floor 18 has a section that curves downward. The five bar folding mechanism of the present invention allows seat assembly 10 to fold down into this curve. Bottom seat cushion 50 and seat back cushion 52 are also depicted. FIG. 4B provides a side view of the seat assembly in an intermediate position between the fold position and the design position (i.e., the position when a vehicle occupant sits in the seat). FIG. 4C provides a side view of seat assembly 10 in the design position. Finally, FIG. 4D provides a side view of seat assembly 10 in a reclined position. It should be appreciated that the design of the present embodiment allows positioning of the seat in the reclined position from the design positioning with minimal pivoting of seat bottom frame 12. Instead, most of the pivoting allowing seat assembly 10 to achieve the reclined positioned is via pivoting of folding linkage 80 about third pivot location 68. Specifically, in positioning from the design position to the reclined position, folding linkage 80 traverse an angle with greater absolute value than the angle traversed by rear linkage 60 about third pivot location 68.
  • While embodiments of the invention have been illustrated and described, it is not intended that these embodiments illustrate and describe all possible forms of the invention. Rather, the words used in the specification are words of description rather than limitation, and it is understood that various changes may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.

Claims (18)

1. A vehicle seat assembly positionable in a vehicle passenger compartment and attachable to a vehicle floor, the seat assembly comprising:
a seat bottom;
a seat back;
a five-bar linkage assembly pivotally attaching the seat back to the seat bottom, the five-bar linkage assembly comprising:
a forward linkage having a first forward linkage end and a second linkage end, the forward linkage end pivotally attached to a forward location of the seat bottom at a first pivot position, and the second forward linkage end pivotally attached to the vehicle floor at a second pivot position;
a rear linkage having a first rear linkage end and a second rear linkage end, the first rear linkage end pivotally attached to a rear location of the seat bottom at a third pivot location, and the second end pivotally attached to the vehicle at a fourth pivot position; and
a folding linkage having a first folding linkage end and a second folding linkage end, the first folding linkage end pivotally attached to the third pivot location, and the second folding linkage end pivotally attached to a fifth pivot position wherein the five-bar linkage assembly allows for movement of the seat bottom in a forward direction as the seat back folds downward to a folded position.
2. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 wherein when the seat back is in the folded position the vehicle seat assembly has a load floor angle of less than 10 degrees.
3. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 wherein when the seat back is in the folded position the vehicle seat assembly has a load floor angle of less than 5 degrees.
4. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 wherein when the seat back is in the folded position the vehicle seat assembly has a load floor angle of about 0 degrees.
5. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 wherein when the seat back is in the folded position the vehicle seat assembly has a load floor angle from about 0 to about 5 degrees.
6. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 further comprising one or more brackets that attach the vehicle seat assembly to the vehicle floor.
7. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 6 wherein the one or more brackets include the second and fourth pivot positions.
8. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 further comprising a bracket that is attached to the vehicle floor and pivotally attaches to the seat back.
9. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 wherein the seat bottom includes a right and left side, and the seat back includes a right and left side such that the five-bar assembly attaches the right side of the seat bottom to the right side of the seat back.
10. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 further comprising a second five-bar linkage assembly that pivotally attaches the left side of the seat bottom and to the left side of the seat back.
11. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 further comprising a latching mechanism for holding the seat back in an upright prosition.
12. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 1 wherein the seat back is positionable into a reclined position with the folding linkage traversing an angle with greater absolute value than a angle traversed by the rear linkage about the third pivot location.
13. A vehicle seat assembly positionable in a vehicle passenger compartment and attachable to a vehicle floor, the seat assembly comprising:
a seat bottom having a left side and a right side;
a seat back having a left side and a right side;
a first five-bar linkage assembly pivotally attaching the right side of the seat back to the right side of the seat bottom;
a second five-bar linkage assembly pivotally attaching the left side of the seat back to the left side of the seat bottom;
wherein the first and second five-bar linkage assemblies each independently comprise:
a forward linkage having a first forward linkage end and a second linkage end, the forward linkage end pivotally attached to a forward location of the seat bottom at a first pivot position and the second forward linkage end pivotally attached to the vehicle floor at a second pivot position;
a rear linkage having a first rear linkage end and a second rear linkage end, the first rear linkage end pivotally attached to a rear location of the seat bottom at a third pivot location and the second end pivotally attached to the vehicle at a fourth pivot position; and
a folding linkage having a first folding linkage end and a second folding linkage end, the first folding linkage end pivotally attached to the third pivot location and the second folding linkage end pivotally attached to a fifth pivot position wherein the five-bar linkage assembly allows for movement of the seat bottom in a forward direction as the seat back folds downward to a folded position.
14. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 13 wherein the bottom bracket is integral to a vehicle floor or the bottom bracket is attached to a vehicle floor.
15. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 13 wherein when the seat back is in the folded position the vehicle seat assembly has a load floor angle of less than 10 degrees.
16. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 13 wherein when the seat back is in the folded position the vehicle seat assembly has a load floor angle from about 0 to about 5 degrees.
17. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 13 further comprising one or more brackets that attach the vehicle seat assembly to the vehicle floor and include the second and fourth pivot positions.
18. The vehicle seat assembly of claim 17 wherein the one or more brackets include the second and fourth pivot positions.
US11/475,569 2006-06-23 2006-06-23 Rear seat extended fold and kneel reconfiguration Abandoned US20070296258A1 (en)

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US11/475,569 US20070296258A1 (en) 2006-06-23 2006-06-23 Rear seat extended fold and kneel reconfiguration
DE200710017260 DE102007017260B4 (en) 2006-06-23 2007-04-12 Rear seat with additional folding and low-floor reconfiguration
GB0712131A GB2439459A (en) 2006-06-23 2007-06-22 Vehicle seat with linkage assembly

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