Recaro – Seating in Motion
“I can totally imagine that passengers in the future won’t just make their choice based on the airline and the price, but also consciously based on features like seating.”
You may have planted your butt in a Recaro seat without even knowing it: the company that made its name in specialty car seating is nowadays one of the world’s largest suppliers of airliner seats but you’d have to be, to coin a phrase, a seat geek to know that.
If all you know of this German company is that they make racing seats, this book will broaden your horizons. If you know your German coachbuilders you may already know that the firm’s name is derived from Reutter Carosserie-Werke, founded in 1906 which means it’s probably not coincidence that this book is coming out on the occasion of the 110th anniversary of what is nowadays known as RECARO Holding which comprises three independently operating companies that specialize in different kinds of seats (auto, aircraft, child safety). And if Porsches, or, for that matter vintage Volkswagens are your thing, Reutter is a name that features prominently.
The book is authored by Frank Jung, RECARO Holding’s Head of Tradition, a role that gives him unfettered access to company archives and personnel. He has also written the book Porsche 356 – Made by Reutter, ISBN 978-3-7688-3270-0.
This comprehensive book is the first and only time the entire Recaro history has been recorded. Any company that stays in business for this length of time has a multi-faceted if not complicated story to tell. Wars, politics, technology, industry trends, consumer tastes—Jung touches on all of these and draws on illustrative material ranging from technical drawings to ads to construction and manufacturing details to flesh out the story.
Not least, he has interviewed managers and designers and even customers to gather first-hand commentary. That the book is an enthusiastic endorsement of the company is neither a surprise nor undeserved. Considering the publisher, it is also no surprise that this book is “design intensive.”
The bulk of the book deals with the post-1963 era, the year Porsche acquired the car body factory and the remaining entity switched to seating systems exclusively (which today also includes wheelchairs, bullet train seats in Japan, chairs for Europe’s top soccer clubs, and even the Leopard 2 battle tank).
Among the several customer profiles the one by a US Porsche 356 owner will be of particular relevance to our audience: not only does his 1964 car have around a million miles on the clock, it also sports its original seats!
Also available in German.
Copyright 2016, Sabu Advani (speedreaders.info)