By on January 11, 2011

Want a small electric car that looks like a movie theater or even a stadium inside?  Johnson Controls shows the ie.3 concept car at NAIAS. Sure, it has a battery. But it also has spring loaded flip-up seats, just like at the movies. Or at he ballpark.

Johnson Controls says the flip-up seats create something that is sorely needed in small cars: Space. You can put some suitcases on the floor when the seats are flipped up. Johnson Controls produces batteries and interiors for vehicles. But they don’t make cars. “The ie:3 could be an attractive model for electric car buyers, although unfortunately it won’t go on sale,” writes an impressed Independent.

Maybe some other automaker will take them up on the idea. Flip a coin?

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

18 Comments on “Introducing A Car With Stadium Seating...”

  • avatar

    The Fit already does something like this, though only with the rear seats and not quite this easily.

    • 0 avatar

      Sure is innovative and all, but aside from novelty, how is this superior to having seats-backs that fold flat?
      The best thing I like about it though is that the seat and seat-frames seem to be minimalist, instead of the bulky over-padded cushions that you find everywhere else.

    • 0 avatar
      Educator(of teachers)Dan

      Easier curbside loading for tight parallel parking.  Oh wait I forgot I’m the only one under the age of 35 who knows how to do that anymore.  (Unless of course your the computer in a Lexus or select Lincolns ect. that can do it automatically.)

  • avatar

    Hopefully, Johnson Controls patented the idea so they can generate revenue from licensing it.

  • avatar

    Wow. Breakthrough. This may cure me of my propensity to throw crap on the back seat…

  • avatar

    I like the idea.  Seats still need to fold flat though.

  • avatar

    The rear seats in my Honda Fit does this.  The front does not because there is a gas tank under it.  If this car has any sort of a battery pack at all, it has to go somewhere.  I find the flip-up back seat useful, but have never encountered a situation when I wished that the front seat would do the same thing.  The beauty of the Fitis that the back seats also fold down to create a flat load floor (unlike the Versa). 

    • 0 avatar

      The one Fit I rode in had a decent backseat but the dang headrests got me right in the middle of my back. Wasn’t in it long enough to see if the headrests could be pulled up and out of my back.

      The Honda Ridgeline does this too according to the brochure I looked at. You can apparently carry a mtn bike back there with the seat folded up. 15 mpg killed my interest in it.

  • avatar

    Well it can’t truly be stadium seating unless there’s sticky soda pop, ground in pop corn, and candy wrappers all over the floor. Don’t forget to hire an usher with a flashlight to help you find your seat in the dark. :-)

  • avatar

    Some guy on Bainbridge Island set up a dealership last October for electric bicycles and “cars”, which from the photo in the news article look more like golf carts. He hasn’t sold any of the golf carts yet, and seems to have finally figured out that you can’t sell vehicles in this climate if they don’t have doors.
    My first glance at the doorless cutaway graphic reminded me of this….

  • avatar

    How about inflatable chairs? Now THAT would save space! (You may have my idea for a nominal fee.)

  • avatar

    Looks like a cut up Kia

  • avatar
    slow kills

    What is the advantage of a suitcase on the floor over a suitcase on a seat?  Having to bend over further to pick it up?
    I toss stuff where it is convenient, and picking things up off the floor is most certainly not convenient.

Read all comments

Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • thornmark: and people that have to get a new car are reduced to shopping Nissan
  • jalop1991: “EVs are improving every year (every month, actually), as is charging infrastructure.”...
  • Tachyon: Living in SoCal, the dirty little secret is that “outside the Tesla ecosystem” Public Charging...
  • EX35: Meh. The one I drove was mediocre and seemed overpriced for what it was. H/K just doesn’t have the value they...
  • Jeff S: I have mentioned the pitfalls of EVs with range, cost, and infrastructure before. Those are givens and those...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Who We Are

  • Adam Tonge
  • Bozi Tatarevic
  • Corey Lewis
  • Jo Borras
  • Mark Baruth
  • Ronnie Schreiber