Volvo creates a new place for the baby – in the front passenger seat.
The luxury Volvo XC90 SUV may have the ultimate baby amenity – a front passenger spot for a rear facing car seat. This could make it easier to soothe your child if you are driving alone with her – you can rest your right hand on the baby while you drive, or pick up a dropped pacifier when you are stopped at a light.
The Swedish car maker says the rear facing seat makes it easier for a passenger in the back seat “to maintain eye contact with your child” though if you have a second adult, he can of course just ride in the back seat next to a child in a rear facing seat in the second row. But a baby in that car seat, riding alone with one adult, can also more easily see the driver and perhaps ride more comfortably.
Tisha Johnson, Chief Designer, Interiors at Volvo Cars Concept and Monitoring Centre, said, “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. 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.”
The Volvo concept seat, shown in Shanghai in the 2016 XC90 “Excellence” SUV, would be illegal in the United States, since children under age 12 are required to ride in the back seat of vehicles.
If the Volvo seat comes to fruition, will Volvo offer a replacement front seat when your child ages out of the rear facing seat?