Everyone wants the most comfortable car that gets the best gas mileage for the least cost. Of course, the car must be HOT! We will help you find that car.
COMFORT IS SUBJECTIVE! You are the ultimate judge of comfort, but sitting comfort is difficult to measure in the halo of price, smell, feel, and looks surrounding the purchase of a car. You need to drive the car several weeks before you fully understand how you feel about seating comfort in your car. Our virtual humans will assist you in your evaluation of the seat comfort for the cars on this website. Our virtual humans provide an objective comfort score on a scale from 1 to 10 for the car you want. If we don’t have the car you want on our website, please send us feedback with your interests.
Discomfort comes from the seat cushion, seat back and any difficulties with vision or reach. The seat must support you so that you can comfortably see the road and surrounding environment as well as see the instrument panel. Your seat also needs to support you so that you can comfortably reach the steering wheel, radio, A/C, accelerator and brake, in the car. Every driver and passenger should be equally comfortable in the seat regardless of their size or personal preference in back posture. Very few cars are able to meet this challenge.
Identify the car that best fits your needs for comfort, price and gas mileage. This website has a database that can be sorted by comfort for body height (stature), gas mileage and price. In addition, each vehicle has examples of the virtual humans sitting in the driver’s seat to show the sources of discomfort that you may experience in your car.
Occuzone is a website that provides the results of seating comfort studies of the car for the driver and passenger. The seating comfort scores are generated by ERL, LLC, licensed to Occuzone. ERL, LLC began as a research laboratory at Michigan State University (MSU) in 1991. General Motors Corporation sponsored the research from 1991-1999. On January 1, 2000, ERL, LLC began as a spin-off company from MSU. Since 2000, the company has developed a large automotive comfort database while incorporating experience and practical knowledge of automotive seat design into the software.
Two of the founding members of ERL,LLC, Mac Reynolds, Ph.D. and Ray Brodeur, D.C., Ph.D., are still with the company. They have over 50 years experience between them in the fields of anthropometry, biomechanics, and behaviorial research that led to the development of several patents that underlay the technology represented in the comfort analysis with virtual human models. These patents are US 6,840,125; 7,047,831; 7,347,114 and DE 1,019,693.
The patents were based upon research conducted at MSU and subsequent knowledge and experience at ERL, LLC. There are numerous other patents applied for in review around the world that cover the comfort algorithm and seat design methods contained in the software.
The automotive industy developed a human body model that was adopted by the Society of Automotive Engineers in the 1960s to serve as a standard representative of the automotive adult occupant in reporting the dimensions of the interior and seat. Over the years, this human body model became the design standard for seats and interiors. Since it represents a 50th percentile male torso and a 95th percentile male leg (which is a very unique individual), the automotive manufacturers turned to their seat suppliers to develop the seat through a series of iterative rides. As you can imagine, this is a very long and expensive process that does not always work.
In addition to learning that the process followed in the industry did not always work, ERL also learned that this human body model represented a “slumped” back posture. Seats have been designed for a slumped posture for many years and with the addition of the Head Restraint, this has created a difficult process to provide seats that many occupants find comfortable for long periods of time.
ERL decided to develop a tool that contained a series of human body models with each having three different back shapes—Erect, Neutral and Slumped. The seat should support each of these three back postures with equal comfort for all three. The result of ERL’s work in this approach is seen in the results presented in this website.
We hope you learn from this site what it usually takes months to find out after you have bought the car. Some cars are comfortable for some people, but very few are comfortable for all people. We hope we have helped you find the car that is comfortable for you.