Johnson Controls Develops a Lightweight Seating System and Innovative Floor Console for the Second Generation of the Kia Ce'd
AUTO CENTRAL – August 28, 2012: "We are pleased to equip the second generation of the Kia cee'd with important interior components and to contribute to the success of this model," said Joris Janssen, general manager Europe for Johnson Controls Automotive Experience’s Kia customer business unit. "The interior of the first generation Kia cee'd was of very high-quality. However, the second generation sets new standards in design, comfort and quality for the compact class. We are proud to contribute to the high standards regarding functionality and quality with our high-quality seats, our stylish floor consoles and the headliner.”
Johnson Controls has developed an especially lightweight seating system for the Kia cee'd that contributes to the vehicle’s sustainability. The system is for comparable versions up to 5.7 kg lighter than the previous model - very lightweight in comparison to seats in current vehicles.
Johnson Controls’ engineers achieved this weight reduction without sacrificing safety by using a lightweight metal structure of high-strength, thin-walled steel for the front and rear seats. A Keiper Taumel 2000 is used as a backrest adjuster in the front seats. The modular rear seat structure is particularly innovative. For the first time, Johnson Controls replaced thick-walled seat pipes with wafer-thin metal frames made of high-strength steel. This adds stability to the split rear seat system.
In addition to the mechanical version front seats with adjustable lumbar support, the Kia cee'd offers an optional electronically adjustable driver’s seat with a tilt adjuster – a unique feature for a vehicle in the compact class. Five motors provide the movement in this driver’s seat.
The model, developed exclusively for the European market, is manufactured in Kia's Zilina plant in Slovakia. Johnson Controls also produces the seating system in Zilina and delivers it to the customer via a just-in-time process. Different versions of the Kia cee'd seat covers are offered in fabric, part leather and full leather.
Interior offers numerous design details
Contributing to the differentiation of the Kia cee’d’s various equipment lines, Johnson Controls also supplies all versions of the floor console. Despite its length of 3.9 ft (1.2 m), the component is a single-piece structure with no visible separation lines. The floor console comes in several versions to support the differentiation of the equipment lines. The high number of versions requires flexibility from Johnson Controls' Slovakian plants in Namestovo (injection molding) and Zilina (assembly).
In the basic version, the floor console is equipped with a mechanical parking brake lever, an upholstered armrest and an open double depression for the cupholder. As in the previous model, standard equipment also includes a storage compartment with electronic connections for USB, AUX and iPod integrated into the front of the console.
In the higher trim levels, the armrest is leather-wrapped and the cupholder has a tambour door. In addition, the parking brake lever has been replaced with a switch for an electric parking brake. The center armrest, which can be adjusted vertically, and air vents integrated into the rear of the floor console increase passenger comfort.
The premium appearance of the interior design is reflected in details like the high-quality soft touch surfaces and chrome elements, but also in the applications either in metal or piano finish on the floor console. As a result, the new Kia cee’d can offer a high-quality interior with features that are usually found only in higher vehicle segments.
More environmentally friendly headliner with less weight
When designing the headliner, Johnson Controls considered acoustic properties, visual effect, pleasant haptics and low weight. A multilayer composite is used for the substrate, which provides improved stiffness in minimal space. Recycled polyurethane foam is used as a spacer instead of the usual injection molded structures. Both technologies save weight, reducing fuel consumption and emissions.