Alternate seats for 2000 Ford Explorer
April 18, 2005 8:51 AM   Subscribe

Anyone know of a source for third-party/aftermarket seats that can be safely installed in a 2000 Ford Explorer Sport? The "factory" seats in the truck aren't very ergonomic at all, and give my wife pretty bad back pain even on moderate (~150 mile) drives. She's got a 1200-mile trip coming up in two weeks, and I'd love to find a solution other than "keep using a lumbar support pillow" which is barely adequate. My Internet searches haven't turned up anything at all, and a "truck accessories" shop I went to in Austin (I'm now in Houston) said "Sorry, we can't help you."
posted by mrbill to Travel & Transportation (9 answers total)
 
Have you tried calling Recaro at 248-364-3818? (Won't be cheap)
posted by Kwantsar at 8:59 AM on April 18, 2005


My uncle is an upholsterer (in rural Wales, sadly). He does quite a lot of business in rebuilding/remodeling car seats. I'd suggest checking your Yellow Pages for someone local like him, though I doubt they'd be able to do it in two weeks.

(Also, they put in fancy new seats all the time on Pimp My Ride, so a custom shop might give you some contacts)
posted by cillit bang at 9:05 AM on April 18, 2005


You might want to track down a company that does van conversions, ask them about a supplier. I'm guessing that Recaro may not make suv seats, but worth a try... And, try calling FMC, they might have an idea..
posted by HuronBob at 9:07 AM on April 18, 2005


Corbeau seems to make a bracket, as well. Corbeau seats are generally not as nice as Recaro.
posted by Kwantsar at 9:09 AM on April 18, 2005


Both Corbeau and Recaro make excellent aftermarket seats for cars, ranging in price from a couple hundred bucks up to several thousand. I've sat in a wide variety of Recaro seats, as well as a couple of Corbeau's, and found them all to be extremely comfortable and supportive.

Legend has it that Sam's Club is now selling Recaro seats for below MSRP, although I've yet to actually investigate this one.

Lastly, if you do decide to go this route, but find that the manufacturers don't make mounting brackets for the Exploder, if you've got a tape measure and a good drill it's fairly easy to make bracket adapters from two pieces of flat steel.

Good luck!
posted by saladin at 9:13 AM on April 18, 2005


If the purpose of your renovation is to save your wife the pain during the long upcoming trip, have you thought of renting a nice sedan with lumbar support in the seats? Most companies have weekly rental rates with unlimited mileage for very reasonable amounts.

My wife's Buick Park Avenue has such good lumbar support (along with the heating, leather, full mobility, etc) that sometimes when I'm having bad back pain, I spend an hour in the garage just looking up through the sun roof.

Of course, the other benefit here is that you're not driving an Explorer through a country currently experiencing a crisis of gas prices -- but that's just a perk.
posted by thanotopsis at 10:20 AM on April 18, 2005


thanotopsis: she's visiting family and friends, and this will be a multi-week trip. Last she checked, it was almost $1K for a month-long rental vehicle. Plus, if we fix the seat problem now, we don't have to worry about a solution for the next trip (she goes every six months or so).
posted by mrbill at 10:47 AM on April 18, 2005


Why not just get a different car permanently? It sounds like this one is really not good for her. (And there's the gas usage problem, too, but I don't mean to be snarky.)
posted by amtho at 1:22 PM on April 18, 2005


Seats are cheaper than the vehicle we already own, is paid off, and still has some extended warranty left.
posted by mrbill at 2:41 PM on April 18, 2005


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