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Seat musings/Your opinion

Posted by Earendil 
April 15, 2009 08:42PM
Not exactly a technical question, but also directly car related. So here we are in the community forum for a little fire side discussion on E30 seats, and courses of action.

My stock, 19 y.o. original fabric seats are coming apart. Not just at the seems either, but the reclining mechanism is broken on the drivers side (fortunately into the position I like), and overall they are just starting to fall apart.

Why are car seats so friggin expensive/ugly? What are you goes doing with your seats as they start to go? Replacing them with the sports seats from an E30? installing different ones? refabricing? Throwing on a seat cover?

It's not one of those things that is dangerous, in need of immediate repair, or even causing me discomfort(yet). But it is one of those things that when showing off the car, I'm a bit embarrassed about. Worn paint I can deal with, a cracked dash, no bigger. Seats with yellow foam coming out of them... eye rolling smiley

We'll see if anyone has an opinion on the matter.

Oh wait, I do have a real question:
Obviously the E30 sports seats hold you better in a corner, but are they any more/less comfortable than the non-sport?
April 15, 2009 09:35PM
If you are larger than most people the sport seats can feel uncomfortable. I prefer the sport seats myself, but my children do not like them. In fact they would rather have a cloth seat over leather. I am much larger than my children so that is not the reason. I guess women are smaller and the extra length of the thigh extension bothers them. To me it is great to have that extra support, and I like to be able to slip around a little with the leather seats. I prefer to keep things pretty much original so if your seats are bad IMO you should have them recovered or replaced with a good one from another car. That is usually a cheaper option.
April 16, 2009 02:30AM
i love the e30 sport seats! and they are very comfortable in my opinion. find a nice used pair to put in your car. just remember that if you get them from a 2-door, they will be able to tilt forward in a non 4-door manner.


rkj
April 16, 2009 09:48PM
One of the most important things in any car is a decent seat, I'm a poor man but recaro, a true one, is a nice upgrade you'll always be glad you did for yourself. I choose an older model that looked right in the car and felt great too.

Its an upgrade I put at the top of the list...
April 16, 2009 11:42PM
Quote
rkj
One of the most important things in any car is a decent seat, I'm a poor man but recaro, a true one, is a nice upgrade you'll always be glad you did for yourself. I choose an older model that looked right in the car and felt great too.

Its an upgrade I put at the top of the list...

if i remember correctly, there are some recaros that come out of the e21 320is that are pretty nice.


April 17, 2009 05:35AM
Fabric sports seats, definatly, even though the leg support is a bit too short for me. Had three cars, all with sports seats, one in leather, two in fabric. Gimme the fabric, as it doesn't slide. Too bad the seats aren't that strong (mechanism breaking).
rkj
April 17, 2009 12:33PM
Quote
Michiel 318iS
Fabric sports seats, definatly, even though the leg support is a bit too short for me. Had three cars, all with sports seats, one in leather, two in fabric. Gimme the fabric, as it doesn't slide. Too bad the seats aren't that strong (mechanism breaking).

The leather ones tend to get really hard too. The seats, from having people let them slam back will crap out after time but I'll take an official Recaro over the Bmw lookalikes (they're not Recaros) everytime.
April 17, 2009 03:21PM
i dont think the normal e30 sport seats are recaro's, either.


rkj
April 17, 2009 06:55PM
They're not.
April 17, 2009 09:39PM
So, are you guys thinking seats along this line? It's a shame they are so expensive. The minute I put that much money into the car is the day she dies smiling smiley I was probably pushing my luck with the $300 for the front end work grinning smiley

The only inexpenive seats come in cardinal red which is just... ugg.

After ebay, craigslist shows no seats (at least listed as such) in the greater northwest area outside of a single pair in Vancouver, WA.
So did all of you guys end up with cars with sports seats already installed? Or did you get lucky locally with a pair? Perhaps stocked a junkyard for a period of time?

~Tyler
April 17, 2009 09:41PM
Oh yeah, one more thing. You mention the 320is as having seats that work. What other model/year combo has seats that are interchangeable with our cars, if any?
April 18, 2009 01:39AM
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Earendil
So did all of you guys end up with cars with sports seats already installed? Or did you get lucky locally with a pair? Perhaps stocked a junkyard for a period of time?

~Tyler

the is and es cars come with sport seats standard (along with the M3 of course), and i think convertibles also.


April 18, 2009 01:41AM
Quote
Earendil
Oh yeah, one more thing. You mention the 320is as having seats that work. What other model/year combo has seats that are interchangeable with our cars, if any?

not sure about directly interchangeable, but people have taken VW GTI recaros and put them in e30s, and you can also retrofit the "vader" seats from the e36 M3 into the e30 with custom seat mounts (there are DIY write-ups online), but i think they look ugly.

check out this r3v subforum and see what you find. [r3vlimited.com]


April 18, 2009 11:15AM
If you are looking for sport seats I have some that are FS. It is pretty hard to find a drivers seat in good shape as it gets the most use obviously. Here is a link if interested! SEATS
April 18, 2009 01:35PM
Quote
wodcutr
If you are looking for sport seats I have some that are FS. It is pretty hard to find a drivers seat in good shape as it gets the most use obviously. Here is a link if interested! SEATS

and there is a special BENN discount, right? grinning smiley


April 18, 2009 01:50PM
Is that a Recaro? Looks like a regular E30 sports seat to me. Those weren't true Recaro's (but they do look like them).

If I lived abroad, I'd part out a car much sooner than I'd do now, looking at the asking price. Whole vehicles as well. Last week a Swede offered to buy my car, didn't really discuss on how much as I said no from the start, but I felt he was going to give me a lot more than I could get in Belgium.
April 18, 2009 01:51PM
See Rick's post a bit higher as well...
April 18, 2009 05:23PM
OK - so you want me to admit that this seat is not a true recaro then I will! Are you happy? I think most of us know that the sport seats are referred to as recaro whether they are or are not, so we all know what is for sale now and we all know that technically the sport seats for the E30 are not true recaro! Now that that is settled I was just a little bit confused about Michiel's post. Do you think that the price for my seats are too high or not enough? I am new to this selling E30 stuff and am not quite sure what everything is worth. I am beginning to think that any E30 is worth more in parts though than a good running vehicle. As far as giving BENN discounts I am sure that can be arranged, but from all indications of the FS forum this place is pretty dead and you all are not buying or selling. Who knows, if my construction business does not pick up I may have to start an E30 junk yard and start selling and shipping parts. Mid life crisis...mid life career change!
April 18, 2009 06:17PM
Quote
wodcutr
I think most of us know that the sport seats are referred to as recaro whether they are or are not...

I wasn't aware of this, but it only sounds like a misunderstanding. Recaro is a brand who has made seats for BMW, not a certain "style" of seat.


rkj
April 18, 2009 09:56PM
Quote
daniel
Quote
wodcutr
I think most of us know that the sport seats are referred to as recaro whether they are or are not...

I wasn't aware of this, but it only sounds like a misunderstanding. Recaro is a brand who has made seats for BMW, not a certain "style" of seat.

The sport seats are made by Bmw, not Recaro Daniel.

Recaro's are made in Germany, but they are a private company.
April 18, 2009 10:58PM
Check out ebay...almost everyone that has a sport seat for sale also has recaro in their listing. They are obviously not recaros, but are assumed to be by most of the truly uninformed!
April 19, 2009 08:41AM
Whether your asking price is correct, depends on the market you operate on. I just notice that prices for parts or complete vehicles in other countries can be a lot higher than where I live. As an example: I bought my well looked after 1990 318iS for €2200 three years ago, which already was a high price compared to others, but I was willing to pay it after I had a chat with the previous (first) owner, who knew a lot on the car and had other older BMW's which were well cared for. I just knew he hadn't neglected it in any way. Now, if I see asking prices for E30's abroad, they often cost double to triple of what I paid. The same for parts. And as we all know, parting out a car usually brings you more than selling the car as a whole.

Another example: the E30 320iS, only sold in Italy (though I believed it was sold in Greece as well). Can be found in Italy for rather reasonable price, try to locate one here in Belgium, you'd pay as much as for a true M3. If I'd want any of both, gimme (read: I will have to save for) the M3 then.
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