My Prius v seats are uncomfortable.

Discussion in 'Prius v Main Forum' started by Matt Lane, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. Matt Lane

    Matt Lane New Member

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    We just bought the v and love the car, but cannot stand the seats. We called toyota and they were pleased that we called and noted the problem with the headrests and seats being absolutely uncomfortable. They said that the only way they can fix this problem is if people call.
     
  2. lisalys

    lisalys Junior Member

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    I completely and utterly threw my back out this weekend with that crazy headrest. It only seems to work if the seat is reclined, but if my seat is reclined, there goes my back. Of course, everything was fine until I drove over an hour, and then whammo.

    I did turn the headrest around, but now it is so far back it won't be any help at all in case of an accident. I tried the headrest from a friend's 2010, and it seemed to work much better, but I'm not really sure where to get one of those. So today I'll be heading off to the Relax the Back store to see what kind of (presumably expensive!!) solution we can come up with.

    I wonder if I can send Toyota my chiropractic bills?
     
  3. Paradox

    Paradox Prius Enthusiast / Moderator
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    You can send em', but that doesn't mean they are gonna pay. ;)
     
  4. lisalys

    lisalys Junior Member

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    Mark, I kinda figured that would be the case!!! :D
     
  5. SageBrush

    SageBrush Senior Member

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    I have owned the G2 Prius, the Lexus CTh200, and the Prius wagon. Hands down I think the seats in the wagon are the most comfortable. Interestingly so does my wife, even though she sets the seat in a position I absolutely hate, and vice versa. We are both thin by American standards, and around 5'6" tall.

    I think a seat just cannot be designed to fit everybody.
     
  6. Aptos Driver

    Aptos Driver Junior Member

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    Seats do not seem to be Toyota's strong point. For starters, they aren't deep enough for most American drivers and passengers. This is a problem with both of our cars -- an '07 RAV4 and a '12 Camry hybrid, both of which have leather-trimmed, power seats. My RAV4 seats were also exceptionally hard for the first couple of years or so. They've since softened and are actually comfortable now. A cousin's kid who's in the auto parts business said Toyota uses a very hard foam material in their seats. I guess you just have to put your seat in the seats for a while to make 'em more user-friendly. Our Camry seats have been more comfortable from the get-go than the RAV's were, but they still aren't exactly the lap of luxury.

    I think maybe Toyota is finally on to this problem. I read online somewhere that the seats in the '13 RAV4 will be deeper than the last iteration's. I hope so. I'm also hoping for a hybrid RAV4 in the next couple of years.
     
  7. Hankth

    Hankth Junior Member

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    I have heard the seats in the v being dissed before. My wife and I both like the seats. She is 5,5 and I'm 5,8, and the seats seem just fine for us both even on long rides. We are both seniors too and are, I think, kind of picky about our comfort. The driver's seat has all kinds of adjustablity. Maybe those who are uncomfortable should try different settings to try and improve their comfort.
     
  8. skwcrj

    skwcrj Member

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    I have no problem with the v's seats. But, the only thing I have to compare are a 1990 Acura Integra (owned since new) and a 1996 Jeep Cherokee (also owned since new).
     
  9. libmanj

    libmanj Junior Member

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    I'm pretty tall (6' 3"), and when I bought the Prius V a few months back, I discovered I was highly uncomfortable with the concave shape of the seat back, which was considerably rounded compared to most seat backs. It didn't fit my back at all. I was very upset. However, I found a seat cushion that works well in the V and totally solved my problem:

    Amazon.com: Jobri - BLO-GR - BetterBack LeanOn Back Support Cushion - Gray -: Home & Kitchen

    This cusion has a wood piece inside that reshapes the seat back shape and a very soft cushion around it. It totally fixed my back pain. It fits very well in the seat and does not block any of the airbags. There isn't a dark gray version though. The gray probably matches the misty gray interior very well. There's also a black option.

    This was a life saver for me.
     
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  10. libmanj

    libmanj Junior Member

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    However, I wish the headrests could go up higher, and I don't know of any fix for that. Any ideas?
     
  11. elcano

    elcano Junior Member

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    My wife strongly hates the Prius v seats. They are certainly not as good as her Honda CRV's or her prior Honda cars (Odyssey and Accord). Also far from the quality of my prior Toyota (1995 Camry).
    The lower back support is almost nonexistent unless you raise the lumbar support. Then it feels like a hard log pressing directly on your column - even worst.
    She avoid trips longer than 1 hour in my car, and I certainly feel the pain after 1 1/2 hours. However, I do not like the idea of using external cushions if I can avoid it. I wonder if it is possible to adapt the front seats of a better Toyota model (wrecked Avalon or Sienna, assuming that they are indeed much better).
     
  12. Offline

    Offline Active Member

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    Very unlikely. I searched a worldwide Toyota parts catalog and found that the US market Prius v front driver seat base part number is not used in any other vehicle manufactured by Toyota and sold anywhere in the world. While the Avalon seat base is completely different, the 2012 Sienna seat base looks virtually identical - at least by eyeballing the diagrams - except that its "legs" that attach to the floor are completely different. If you look, you will see that your Prius v seat base is attached to its legs by rivets and not bolts so it's not just a matter of switching the legs between seat bases.

    And although the Sienna and Prius v seat bases appear from the diagrams to be vitually identical, they may not be and the seat rails may actually be closer or further apart from each other that on the Prius v.

    Regardless, the logistics of switching seats between models can be incredible complex due to side air bags and electrical connections and more so if the replacement seats are power adjustable. The potential liability would keep any professional business from assisting in a modification of this type.

    Immense forces can be generated in a crash. I'll never forget when a coworker's aunt was paralized when her driver seat broke loose from the floor when her car was rear ended and she was catapulted head first into her rear window.
     
  13. elcano

    elcano Junior Member

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    Thanks for the info. And it is very unfortunate what happened to that lady. Things are not as simple now as in past. I remember people upgrading to other maker's seats. So, isn't there a aftermarket business for upgraded seats anymore?
     
  14. iClaudius

    iClaudius Active Member

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    Can a body shop reupholster (sp) the seats? Extending the seat to add the missing thigh support that causes the sore butt and back problems? I would guess $200-$300 a seat and it would the most cost effective solution.
     
  15. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    You can have an upholstery shop add foam to the seats. I believe there is enough stretch to do so. If not you can have the seats covered in a different material afterwards. Seat comfort is very important so do what needs to be done or sell the car. I would argue that fixing the seats is cheaper than what you will lose by selling the car.
     
  16. iClaudius

    iClaudius Active Member

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    Are these auto upholstery shops? Tied into body shops?

    Never mind. Googled, found some and emailed for budget price.
     
  17. Matt Lane

    Matt Lane New Member

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    There is an unbelievable problem with these seats. We just drove from LA to Chicago and could only drive for six hours at a time. Neither one of us has ever had a back or neck problem in our entire life until purchasing this car. Just drove for an hour in a 2008.....absolutely no problem! This is a heartbreaking experience as this V was second to the absolute top of the line. The plastic interior is absolutely cheap as well....even those most minor touch of releasing the seatbelt against the plastic makes permanent scratches. I hope that you are able to recuperate the money for your chiropractor. We are going to see if we can get different seats installed or sell the car.
     
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  18. Air_Boss

    Air_Boss Senior Member

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    Amazing. We have a CR-V SE (leather seating) and a Prius v Five and the Prius seat comfort as well as seating position are so far superior, I cannot articulate the magnitude. Like YMMV, YSCMV (Your Seating Comfort May Vary).
     
  19. rico567

    rico567 Junior Member

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    This is sorry news. We are going to be looking at the Prius soon, and specifically the "v." This may well be the deal-breaker, because we do a big percentage of highway driving, and place a very high value on the seats (present ride: '04 SAAB 9-5, top 10% seating-wise). May I know your height / weight, or approximations?
     
  20. lisalys

    lisalys Junior Member

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    I bought a $150 backrest from Relax the Back, and I haven't had a problem since. It has a really strong lumbar curve, and goes up high enough to hold you away from the headrest. Now I'm no longer leaning back in order to compensate for the headrest, and my back is doing great.
    Of course, right after I bought it, one of my friends told me he's got the tools to bend the posts on the headrest so they don't force your head forward if you sit straight up. I may try that and see if I like it. RtB has a month return policy, so I've still got 2 weeks to return it if I like the cheaper solution. :)
     
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