3D Scanning Aids Automotive Seat Development

Seat Development


It can seem as if automotive seat manufacturers are stuffing everything but the kitchen sink into their seat designs nowadays. For example, major automotive interior suppliers such as Johnson Controls and Lear have integrated climate control systems into their seats. The challenge for their engineers is to package more and more accessories into their seats without impeding on style and comfort.

Automotive Seat


With the help of Dimensional Engineering, laser scanning and reverse engineering have become integral parts of the seat development process for selected automotive interior suppliers. We have helped the suppliers apply these digital data capture technologies at every stage of the process – from clay models and skived foam to the trimmed prototype.

As engineers modify the designs, the physical models and prototypes are laser scanned to digitally capture the latest revisions in a CAD model. When every aspect of the new seat design has been approved, the CAD model becomes the master for quality control and the Production Part Approval Process (PPAP) before the seat’s production actually begins.


Our client, an automotive seating engineer, describes the benefits of the Dimensional Engineering approach in this way: “In the past, our biggest problem was efficiently and accurately capturing the seat’s development at every step. The laser scanning technology lets us do this. We have even been able to eliminate expensive template fixtures.”